Part 3 – Landscapes and Long Exposure
The natural world can be incredibly beautiful and if you are lucky enough to visit areas of outstanding natural beauty it’s my job as a travel photographer to capture the best a place has to offer so that it can be viewed by the rest of the world.
I’ve been fortunate enough to visit quite a few countries that have some amazing landscapes and there are a few tips that I’d like to share so that you too can make the most out of landscape photography.
The first thing that is an absolute necessity is a decent tripod; if you take longer exposures you can always get a lot more depth and sense of movement to your shots. When shooting sunrise, sunset and general low light conditions you really need to be keeping your ISO down and increasing your exposure time, this will ensure that your images remain at high quality.
Remote triggers and timers go hand-in-hand with a tripod so make sure that you have a system that you’re comfortable with.
Filters – don’t be scared of using them, ND grad filters are far and away one of the most useful tools besides your tripod to get the most out of a landscape. I’m also a huge fan of Lee’s Big and Little Stopper filters, 10 and 6 stop ND filters respectively. These allow you to really stretch out your exposure times even during the brightest of conditions; they can produce some truly magical shots!
Aperture is very important when you’re trying to capture landscapes, most what you’re capturing will be a long way in the distance so the smaller the aperture the better, I usually shoot between f/12 and f/22. Remember that the smaller the aperture the longer the exposure will need to be so be careful around sunset as you can quickly run out of time which is why I tend to increase my aperture and ISO a little so that I can get my shots done quicker.
If you can afford it I’d recommend investing in a good quality, wide lens. I currently use the Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L II USM Lens and am very happy with the results, it really makes a huge difference to be able to get so much into your shot.
Make sure that you explore the area as thoroughly as you can; the best views are generally not too easy to get to so make sure you’re packed up with everything you need and get those walking boots on!
As mentioned in the first part of this series it’s always important to make sure that you’ve done your research and have an idea about where you want to shoot as it can take a very long time to get to some of the best vantage points for landscape shooting.
Described by past clients as professional, unique, exceptional and inspiring, UK based award winning photographer Kimberley Coole is available for assignment or commission both locally and internationally, specialising in travel photography.
Kimberley is also a member of X-Rite’s prestigious Coloratti group, a guest blogger for Manfrotto Imagine More, a Manfrotto Ambassador, and a multi-image finalist for the prestigious Travel Photographer of the Year Award 2012 plus a category winner for the Eyes on Asia Awards 2013.