Lately I have been posting some photography related tips to my Facebook page and I decided that it would be a great subject for my first blog post. This is by no means a comprehensive list, but just a few that I have compiled recently and decided to share.
Tip #1 - Don't Pack Up Your Gear Too Early
This may seem like a fairly obvious one but I have been guilty of it myself a number of times. Don't pack up your gear too early! So many times I have put my gear away and left after sunset, only to find that there is an encore performance that I'm missing out on.
It is always good practice to hang around for at least another 30mins after sunset, as you never know when the sky will light up with some last minute pinks and reds. The shot below was taken approx 20mins after the sun had disappeared and the light looked like it had gone.
Tip #2 - What Time Of Day Is The Best For Landscape Photography?
Not all landscape photographs need to be taken during the 'Golden Hour'. While yes, this is the ideal time to capture some beautiful light, and you only have to scroll back through my Facebook timeline to see that it is definitely my preferred time of day. However don't let yourself be restricted to only these times.
I can think of a number of images that I have captured that haven't been taken during sunrise/sunset and they are among my favourite photographs in my portfolio. Certain scenes and landscapes work very well during the day.
The image below, I believe is a good example. A tropical island with white sand and crystal clear blue water would also work very well. Don't be afraid to experiment at all times throughout the day.
Tip #3 - Be aware of where you tripod legs are!
When shooting with a really wide angle lens, it can be easy to forget about what's directly underneath your camera. Because of the extreme field of view with say a 14-24mm or a 8mm fisheye lens, it picks up a lot of foreground. If you're not careful, this can include your feet, or in the case of this photo, a tripod leg. Thank goodness for the magic of Photoshop allowing me to remove it afterwards. Always check your foreground.
Tip #4 - Don't Always Go Wide
Sometimes you will encounter a scene that you are trying to photograph and various elements may be protruding into your frame such as trees, debris etc that aren't moveable. Instead of shooting with a wide lens, try changing to something a little longer and zoom in past the obstructions and distracting elements to capture finer details as opposed to the entire scene.
With this shot below I had lots of overhanging trees at the sides and a few growing up from the bottom. I really wanted to capture the entire waterfall but the extra trees were really distracting. Changing lenses and my composition really helped to remove those unwanted elements.
Tip #5 - You Can Shoot Macro Without A Macro Lens
This is a great one for anyone wanting to try out some basic macro photography. No macro lens?...No worries - While you won't be able to achieve a true 1:1 ratio, try stepping back from your subject and then using a zoom lens to close the gap and bring it in nice and close. If you have a lens that has a relatively close focus distance as well then that will certainly help. This image was shot using the Olympus M.Zuiko 40-150mm f/2.8 lens.