Thoughts on my landscape photography

16 December 2019

I just want to spend a little while talking about how I approach landscape photography. Now this is not me saying this is the right way, it’s just my way, and my way has changed quite a lot since I first started.

Photographing any landscape, street scene, mountains, rivers, lakes or architecture takes all sorts of considerations if you are into planning this type of shoot and generally I’m not. I carefully plan every other aspect of my photography, apart from landscape work. Oh sure, I take adequate kit, check the weather, security and access to a particular area and so on, but that’s about it. I don’t approach a landscape photography shoot in the same way as a wedding, portrait or commercial shoot for example, and there is a very definite reason for that……

You see, this is just my chill time really, it isn’t usually client lead, although I do take commissions, it’s a chance for me to chuck the camera bag into the car and just head out with no expectation or pressure and no time limits. I might have a vague idea of an area I want to head to, most times I have no idea of the shots I want and this just works for me. I know some photographers will meticulously plan every detail of a landscape shoot and there is absolutely nothing wrong with that, it makes sense and it is probably better than my approach, but it isn’t the way I work. Once I get to an area it’s just a matter of having a wander around and think about the shots that may be there, how the light is and what the weather is doing or likely to do, and then I pray for a bit of luck.

“Some days you just get lucky… Other days you wait patiently for luck to happen” – Destin Sparks

The day I took the images of Cod Beck Reservoir, North Yorkshire, which are featured here Cod Beck in Autumn – EnA Photography I started the day shooting autumn scenes in my local park, then had a run to Hartlepool for a couple of shots (I didn’t get what I wanted there) and heading home I saw the beginnings of a gorgeous sky which was going to make a lovely sunset in around an hour, so I just headed up there. It turned out to be an incredible sunset reflected in the lake and I got some images which I am really pleased with.

“Getting it right is not an issue. It is difficult to make a mistake with the sophisticated technology we now have. Making a personal and creative image is a far greater challenge” – Michael Kenna

When I first started shooting landscapes I was very keen that the finished images basically represented exactly what I had seen when shooting. That has changed over time and quite a lot of my landscape images over the past couple of years especially are more art like and rely on a fair bit of artistic licence. I think one of the reasons for this is that everywhere in our area has, quite rightly, been the subject of thousands of brilliant photographs and so sometimes, not always, I like to show an alternative view of somewhere popular. Take a look at some of the images here Roseberry Topping – EnA Photography and you will see what I mean, I hope.

Just for reference I process all my images in Adobe Lightroom, very rarely use Photoshop (It’s complicated init!), I shoot on two Nikon cameras with a variety of lenses and generally have a polarising filter attached to stop glare and focus the colours.

Well, If you have made it this far, well done and thank you, feel free to leave a comment, have a look at the galleries and drop me a message on my socials if you fancy a natter.

Thanks, and stay safe.

Ian

    1 comment

  • Lorraine Richardson
    16 December 2020
    Reply

    Great, honest approach! Love it 😊

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