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Landscape Photography – An Ultimate Expert's Guide with 50 Tips

Landscape Photography – An Ultimate Expert’s Guide with 50 Tips

Chase Teron image

Are you looking for landscape photography tips to help you improve your photography? In this article Pro Arctic photographer Chase Teron shares his top 50 landscape photography tips on how to shoot landscapes like a pro.

Landscape photography tips

Section 1: Before the Shoot

Some of my most  important landscape photography tips take place before the shoot starts. Good preparation is essential.

1. Kit Choices – Choose a full frame camera for best quality and to seize opportunities

Do you need a full frame camera for landscape photography? The answer is yes. Not only do full frame cameras offer superior image quality but they also typically have higher bit depth for colour quality and more megapixels. Additionally, when you’re in the field in the Arctic for example you’ll want a full frame to shoot the northern lights with the larger sensor size. In addition places like Svalbard and Greenland provide you with the scenery to shoot wide angle dynamic scenes and it’s best not to have any crop to affect your desired compositions. Additionally, a full frame camera typically has better weather proofing and would last longer and provide you with a better overall shooting experience. You’ll be able to brave any weather conditions without any concern of ruining your camera with water damage. I have a Canon R5 and a Canon 5D Mark IV as my backup.

landscape photography tips Canon R5
landscape photography tips Canon R5 Rear

2. Kit Choices – High quality, sturdy tripod

This is usually the downfall of beginner and intermediate photographers. They try to save money on tripods and I can tell you that it will cost you more money in the long run both in missed opportunities and in needing to upgrade in the future to the tripod you should have invested in on day 1. Choose a tripod and tripod head that can handle 35lbs plus. When you’re in windy conditions or tougher conditions, you need a tripod that can handle these elements with ease and that won’t get blown around. I chose a Gitzo carbon fibre tripod for the weight capacity, and it’s lightweight to hike with and finally the reputation of the company. As for ball heads I have two, the first is a RRS ball head and the second is a Gitzo ball head.

landscape photography tips equipment

3. Neutral Density Filters

For those people interested in shooting waterfalls, rivers, streams, ocean scenes or fast moving clouds then ND filters are a must. I use the Polar Pro Summit series collection and this allows me to control my desired shutter speed in any lighting conditions and allows me to create the smooth water effects when needed. When shooting in Greenland for example, I’ll look for waterfalls and streams in addition to photographing the Ilulissat Icefjord with a slow shutter speed for an artistic effect.

landscape photography tips camera kit

4. Utilizes Polarizers

One of my top landscape photography tips is that polarizers are fantastic for adding in contrast to scenes and by removing glare from water scenes, rocks, trees and even icebergs. I highly recommend bringing a polarizer along when shooting in the Arctic to help with your sea-scape photography as polarizers can add dramatic effects to boring or bright skies. The polarizer can add detail to really bright clouds or ice and deepen the luminosity values of the sky which helps your image stand out. When the sun is at 90 degrees to your left or right of an iceberg focal point this is when polarizers produce the best results. See my image from Greenland where the polarizer cuts right through the reflection showcasing the clear blue water.

50 landscape photography tips
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5. Kit Choices – Wide Angle Lens Selection

My favourite landscape lenses are the Canon 16-35mm f/2.8 USM III and the Canon RF 24-70mm f/2.8. Both of these lenses have wide maximum apertures which makes this lens perfect for shooting astrophotography scenes as well. I would choose the 16-35mm set up to capture scenes that are close to me as the viewer and photographer or when I have a scene with really interesting foreground elements. The 24-70mm allows me to zoom into interesting areas and for me to focus on my main focal point if I’m further away from the scene.

Canon Lens
landscape photography tips

6. Protection for camera for elements – water, sand, snow

In order to protect your gear as I have previously mentioned, having a full frame camera not only produces high quality image output but they typically have weather sealing and to me that’s worth the extra jump in price. In addition to weather sealed bodies, I recommend using UV filters. Not so much for their UV filtration, but more so as protection for your expensive lens glass.

7. Research your Location

Scouting your location prior to shooting it with your desired lighting conditions is one of the most important things you can do in order to maximize your time creating powerful and breathtaking compositions. If you cannot go to your shooting location prior to shooting like going on a trip of sorts, then look at Google Earth and download apps like Photographer’s Ephemeris https://photoephemeris.com/en and Photo Pills so you can get to the location early to then see what the positioning the sun will be in using augmented reality. If you need inspiration, for sure check out Google images to get your ideas flowing and for inspiration, avoid copying the inspiring photographer’s composition when you get a particular location. This is the best part of photography, getting creative with composition and light.

8. How to choose a location for landscape photography – wild and remote.

Whenever I’m choosing to go on a landscape photography trip or landscape photography tour, I am always looking for a location that has unique scenes, dynamic weather systems, mountains, seascapes, unique flora, glaciers and water ways in addition for the ability to add in the human element into landscape scenes. The locations I want to travel to have different and ever changing focal points and are not cliches or overshot locations and that’s why I choose to explore and photograph Greenland and Svalbard and why I’m planning on venturing to Baffin Island with Secret Atlas. Greenland offers diverse land and seascapes mixed in with really unique lighting conditions during the summer months which provide you with endless golden hour light. Svalbard is also an extreme location where you have jagged mountain peaks with glacial middle ground and iceberg foregrounds, what more could you ask for?! Don’t forget to check out Secret Atlas’s photo expeditions here to some of the most remote places on Earth.

landscape photography tips in Greenland
landscape photography tips Svalbard

Section 2: On the Shoot – Practical Approaches and Camera Settings

9. Identify a strong focal point 

Expanding on the previous point of choosing locations with desirable and interesting focal points is the key to drastically improving your landscape photography results. I find most photographers shoot scenes with a lack of thought and idea of where they want the viewer’s eye to go. Choose a subject in your scene and then work your way backwards to the camera and guide the viewer’s eye to your main focal point.

landscape photography tips svalbard sea ice

10. Utilize phone applications 

As mentioned before, sometimes planning needs to happen moments before the epic light happens and with this you can use applications like Photo Pills or Aurora to understand how to best prep and best position yourself and have your scene composed prior to the golden light or dramatic light. In addition to photography applications, I choose hiking applications like All Trails where I have pre-downloaded maps and can record my trek. Strava also is another fantastic application to get added data for elevation and to add in waypoints for future reference.

11. Choose the lowest ISO value you can

ISO 100 is standard for shooting landscapes and with this setting you’ll be utilizing your tripod to manage the slow shutter speeds to ensure the sharpest results. If in fact, you cannot use a tripod then choose the lowest ISO value you can get away with without underexposing your scene. Remember if you need to shoot at ISO 1600 but you’re 1 stop underexposed on your light meter, you’ll need to fix this in post and it’s like shooting at ISO 3200 but with worse quality. Always use the approach of ETTR, expose to the right. Adding pixels and light to a scene in post processing causes the image quality and output to be negatively affected. Remember ISO is your camera sensor’s sensitivity to light so the higher the value the more grain that is needed to bring brightest to pixels. So rather let’s keep our ISO low and image quality high and get the proper exposure by having a slow shutter speed and ensure our aperture is the best for the particular scene.

12. Settings: Choosing an aperture

Shoot on f/8 as this is typically the sharpest aperture in any given lens and camera body set up. When you’re shooting a general scene you can focus on the middle ground and that should provide sharp results or choose to focus on your main focal point. If, however, you want to have your foreground sharp, middle ground sharp and your background sharp you’ll have to focus stack in properly expanding your depth of field. If you shoot with a smaller aperture, you will have more in focus, a larger depth of field than f/8 but you’ll lose out on sharpness due to the laws of physics causing diffraction. Therefore avoid going to f/22 or higher as diffraction may occur – losing sharpness in your image even with proper focus achieved. In a simple scene where you’re photographing mountains or glaciers then you can use f/4.5 in order to have a smaller ISO output. Think of scenes as either 2-dimensional or 3-dimensional and when you have a 3-dimensional feel with foreground, middleground and backgrounds then you need a more narrow aperture and potentially focus stacking. Remember, focus stacking requires a tripod and for you to be on solid ground so keep this in mind. Astrophotography has different requirements and typically you’ll shoot on a wider aperture for both the milky way and northern lights.

13. Use the rule of thirds

An essential one of my landscape photography tips is that the rule of thirds is one of the most important basic rules of composition you can learn and understand. Effectively you’ll have the most interesting components whether that is a foreground and midground in the bottom ⅔ of the scene or if the sky is super interesting then the midground and background as the top ⅔ of the image. In addition to having interesting focal points move through the intersecting points of the 3×3 grid. For a more detailed explanation of the rule of thirds be sure to check out my other blog on Secret Atlas.

landscape photography composition

14. Utilize leading lines

One of the most important landscape photography tips! Leading lines are natural occurring lines and patterns created by water ways, layers or lighting in a scene that help the viewer’s eye move from front to back in a photograph to your main focal point. Usually in this scenario you’ll want to have an interesting foreground leading the viewer’s eye further back into the scene. For example, if you are traveling in Svalbard, one of my favourite scenes to photograph would be the fast ice shards in the foreground and middle ground leading back to an epic mountain range or glacier on Spitsbergen island in Eastern Svalbard. If you have read up on landscape photography you’ll know very well about leading lines from the master Ansel Adams. He typically used river systems or tree layers that had beautiful S curves leading the viewer’s eye from front to back of the image.

15. Bracket your images in scenes with high dynamic range of light

Bracketing is a technique where you take multiple exposures without moving your camera to capture details in the highlights, details in the shadows and the midtones during scenes with large ranges of light. A typical scenario for example would be photographing mountains in Svalbard with a beautiful sunset. If you were to expose for the bright sunset, then your mountains would be underexposed and almost silhouettes. If you expose for the dark mountains, then the sky would be overexposed and you would lose the colours in the sky. When you bracket, if you take a base exposure and a -2 and +2 you will almost guarantee that you have the entire dynamic range of light covered and all of the necessary details in the scene to then blend it in Lightroom or Photoshop.

16. Choose multiple perspectives

When photographing icebergs in Greenland for example, it’s disadvantageous to just shoot them from one angle as we may not be experiencing the best scene with the best angle of light. Therefore moving around changing both the angle of shooting and the height at which we shoot can drastically improve our image results. I love shooting landscape scenes nice and low for reflections especially or to have foliage blurred out in the foreground and also changing perspectives completely by sending up the drone. This is also the same for glaciers, typically in Svalbard you want to shoot the glaciers straight on. Although this may produce a beautiful result like below, it’s not as dynamic or three dimensional as this scene photographed from the side.

17. Waterfall & Moving Water Settings

When you first get into photography and you see those images with the blurred waterfall, you immediately say “how do you take photographs with blurred water?!” because it’s such an interesting effect the first time around. However, what we want to ensure as photographers is that we can showcase movement appropriately. Meaning, for most blurred waterfalls with long exposures, you have no idea of how fast the water is falling or moving and you actually lose details and textures in the water. When shooting waterfalls or moving water, I start off at 1/10 or 1/4th of second shutter to ensure that I can preserve the water details and showcase movement properly. Vary your shutter speeds with waterfalls. One of the most common mistakes I see with photographers is that they want to have the ultra slick waterfall where the detail disappears and the waterfall is drastically overexposed and almost unsalvageable. When you’re shooting with wide angle lenses with image stabilization and with in  camera body image stabilization you’ll be surprised at how slow your shutter speed can get to with hand holding and still producing a sharp result. Otherwise use a tripod if possible.

18. Utilize the histogram

When shooting in the field, it’s easy to actually over or underexpose areas in an image that you didn’t account for. We look at the JPEG image preview and it can look great but it may technically be incorrect. The histogram will provide us with the preview and information we need quickly to ensure we have not clipped the blacks or whites and help us to avoid losing that data in our raw images.

19. Zoom In

A lot of landscape photography enthusiasts like to think that all landscape photos are captured with wide angle lenses. This is far from the truth and especially if you’re in a remote region of the Arctic where you have complexities in the landscape like glaciers or mountains and you cannot get closer. Utilizing telephoto lenses will allow you to get a clear view of your focal point and to ensure that you have a good proportional amount of negative space. A lot of my most favourite landscape images from Svalbard or from Greenland were taken with a telephoto lens.

glacier in Svalbard landscape

Section 3: Shooting Amazing Landscapes

Now it is time to take our Landscape photography tips out into the field.

20. Shoot during blue hour – Maximize the good light

One of my most essential landscape photography tips. The landscape photographer that shows up just for sunrise or sunset is missing out. The ambient glow from just before a sunrise or just after a sunset provides some of the best moods for your landscape scenes. In both Svalbard and Greenland for example, I like to have the warm highlights from the ambient glow with the blue shadows from blue hour. Then I have those sets of images and then the more dynamic light is next!

landscape photography advice from pros

21. Shoot during golden hour – Maximize the good light

This is an extension to the previous post. Say for example, you want nothing to do with blue hour. That is totally fine, but let me tell you, you still need to be at your landscape scene and location during this time. In order to be best prepared and ready to shoot, you can compose your landscape scenes before your desired light arrives and therefore you maximize your overall shooting time. The best part of Svalbard and Greenland for example is that during specific times of year golden hour is everlasting. In Greenland the light is fantastic in late July to late August with 3 to 6 hours of golden light. In Svalbard, there is midnight sun from April 19th until August 25th or so. What this means is that the light will not be golden but it will be more dramatic with weather systems that come through.

22. Shoot into the sun

This is one of my favourite landscape photography tips. We have the ability nowadays in Photoshop to edit any glare or light leaking that may occur while shooting into the sun. This technique can be achieved through bracketing in the field and then with photoshop masking layers and then blending the exposures.

Svalbard Landscape photography tips

23. Shoot panoramas

This technique allows you to shoot really large landscape scenes or tight scenes and put it all into one shot. Typically you use a tripod with a panorama bracket mount so that you can determine the nodal point of your camera and lens set up. When you’re shooting landscape scenes you will only need to determine the nodal point of the lens when you have complex foreground and middle grounds to avoid parallax. Parallax is when you have a foreground element and when you take different angles of a scene the midground and background changes for the same foreground element which causes inconsistencies in the panorama output. The nodal point is the particular area of rotation point of a camera and lens set up in which the background and middle ground remains the same with the particular foreground element regardless of the section of the panorama. When you shoot basic panorama scenes of a mountain or glacier in Svalbard for example, you shoot with portrait orientation and you move left to right. After your first image, you will overlap that first shot ⅓ into the next scene and each shot has a ⅓ overlap to allow for proper post production merging. Here’s a panorama example of 5 vertical shots to create this Svalbard panorama.

Svalbard landscape photography

24. Shoot on f/16 to f/20 to get sun bursts when the sun is near an edge like a forest, iceberg, mountain or glacier

One of my fun creative landscape photography tips is to shoot into the sun as previously mentioned but utilizing a different aperture setting for a unique sunburst output. This works best when the sun is on the edge of a subject.

25. Create depth

The goal of my landscape photography is to create movement and depth in my scenes. This can be achieved by utilizing foreground to background elements in addition to large scenes where you have a close focal point with higher saturation and contrast with distance scenes that fade as they go back further into the scene. In this photograph from South Greenland, you can see that if this iceberg was not present, the overall scene would be hazy and lack contrast but because I have an iceberg in the middle ground, the saturation and contrast is present and the hazy mountains remain untouched in post processing.

greenland landscape photography with icebergs

26. Utilize Movement

When photographing landscape scenes, utilizing movement in clouds, blowing grasses, moving trees or moving ice can add that creative touch you need to make your landscape photography stand out. When I’m in Longyearbyen in Svalbard, I like to go to the shoreline and photograph the fast moving clouds with an ND filter to get beautiful movement with the iconic mountain ranges.

27. Use People for Scale

Depending on your approach to landscape photography, some may be pure-ists and want to only shoot nature and that is totally fine. If you’re into landscape and travel photography, adding in a human element can showcase scale and create a more dynamic scene which allows viewers to envision themselves in that location. This photograph below was taken by my wife Jenni Teron of me in Disko Bay, Greenland.

greenland landscape photography with moody light

28. Embrace Miserable Weather

The thing that remains relatively consistent with landscape photography is typically the land and scenes themselves and what drastically can change is the light and your perspective. This is how you differentiate your landscape images from others. In this tip, I want to emphasize the need to get out in the field regardless of the poor weather conditions. This day in South Greenland was raining and cold. We decided to wait for the sunset even though we thought it wouldn’t happen. Sure enough we were rewarded with this unique light on this iconic Greenland peak and it’s all due to not being a fair weather photographer.

greenland landscape photography

29. Planning – Go to the right location during the right time of year

This tip is an emphasis to manage your expectations for what you can produce. This is not a different approach to even wildlife, you choose to photograph wildlife during specific times of the year to get your best chances for the best results. You can choose different locations for different times of the year based on season, based on lighting conditions, weather patterns or even accessibility.

30. Frame your scene with a natural vignette

This tip is meant to help you understand that you can find natural vignettes in nature and you can frame your scene using shadows, naturally occurring elements in your scene by putting them in the perimeter sections of your composition.

31. Utilize foreground elements

In landscape photography, the idea is not always to have everything in focus. The idea is to manage where the viewer’s eye goes through the image. When you have beautiful flora in your foreground take some images with it in focus and then have it blurred out by getting close to the camera and focusing on the mid ground. The results can be very beautiful.

landscape photography tips 2

32. Utilize background and foreground elements for balance

When shooting in the field, this overlay visual may help you understand where and how to place elements in a scene for a balanced approach with complex landscapes.

landscape photography advice

33. Composing Iceberg Scenes

To capture icebergs beautifully either have ⅔ of foreground and ⅓ sky or if the sky is interesting give more space to the sky and have it occupy ⅔ – I usually see a bit of an issue with clients and guests photographing icebergs is that they place the horizon directly in the middle of the photo which leads to a weaker resulting composition.

34. Shooting Calving Glaciers in Greenland or Svalbard

When photographing glaciers listen to where the calvings are and even if you miss the first calving, be ready to shoot in that exact same area as more are likely to occur. Use faster shutter speeds to ensure you can cleanly capture the action.

greenland landscape photography from kayak

35. When photographing landscapes from a zodiac your foreground will be ever changing, look ahead to what interesting icebergs or ice floes can be put into your scene that can create unique compositions. Have the zodiac or boat do a 360 degree rotation around the iceberg.

36. When photographing in a zodiac with limited movement and more people focus on increasing your focal length and using telephotos to capture glaciers or mountains. Mountain portraits are always a good idea in Svalbard or Greenland.

37. When photographing from a zodiac, it’s also important to note that your shutter speed should be faster than normal as you are constantly changing the distance between you and the subject.

38. Shooting the perfect Arctic landscape

What this means is totally up to the photographer and what they are inspired by. Some photographers prefer the complex scenes with foreground, midground and background elements and scenes that require more planning. While others prefer minimalistic approaches either with telephoto use or long exposures or reflections. What I would say to produce the best results is to think about all different styles of landscape photography and to develop your skills in each area to see which technique can produce the best results under your current circumstances.

Section 4: After the Shoot

Some of my best landscape photography tips take place after the shoot is over in post-production.

39. Import your images to a dust proof, shock proof, water resistant or waterproof external hard drive

I cannot emphasize enough in regards to choosing high quality hard drives, memory cards and gear in general. You really get what you pay for, so choose hard drives that have these specs and that professionals use. As we progress with technology, SSD drives will become more affordable with larger capacity and with water resistant, waterproof, shockproof specs but right now they are a small fortune. I choose Lacie rugged hard drives, they perform really well and they have fantastic customer service if your hard drive were to have any issues. I had a port issue at one point where my hard drive wouldn’t stay connected and I sent it back to Lacie and with their warranty system that came with my drive, they sent me a brand new drive in addition to backing up my old drive.

40. Clean your camera equipment

Always ensure any electrical portions of your camera are cleaned with a dry microfiber towel with no water or cleaner solution. You can use something like a cotton swab to remove dust and debris near buttons or near connection points for the body and lens. For your sensor follow the strict guidelines of how to use the air blower and to never touch the sensor. Remember, cleaning your camera after each outing prevents any grime build up that can cause your camera to be unusable or cause future problems. This is an asset and it needs to be treated with care. Additionally, when you go to sell your camera to purchase a new one, you’ll be able to charge more for it’s pristine condition.

41. Charge you batteries

This one may seem obvious, but the amount of times I see uncharged batteries in the field is shocking. In my camera bag, I have designated weather proof pockets that I have fully charged batteries and batteries that need charging. Then when I clean my camera, I set up the batteries at my charging station. I set up a charging station and backup station wherever I go, whether I’m traveling in the Arctic on a Svalbard Photo Tour on an icebreaker or on a commercial shoot and I’m staying in a hotel.

42. Have a memory card organization system

Similarly to the battery system I have above, I have a memory card organization system. Two small Pelican memory card cases that are weatherproof and waterproof. One case is empty cards ready to shoot and the other is full cards. Before each shoot I check my memory card space and my battery levels, I never make assumptions even with a system.

photography advice kit

43. Prep your gear for what’s next – finding your field rhythm

This tip builds off of the previous two but now with lenses, extra accessories, clothing, snacks and water. For example if I’m teaching on a photo tour in Svalbard or a photo tour in Greenland, I ask the tour guides what our plan is for the next day to gauge what gear I’ll need and what subjects we should be anticipating in the particular area. Typically my work station has my Canon R5 with my 400mm f/2.8 connected and ready to use and within my camera bag I have my extenders 1.4x and 2.0x. If at any time during Polar Bear scouting on the icebreaker one of us finds a Polar Bear we will have a little bit of time to get ready so I know exactly what my process is to grab my camera then my camera bag. Otherwise if the Polar Bears are within shooting range then I’m good to shoot already with no fear of no memory or no battery and also no camera set up. If we have the option for the zodiac to get closer and to get lower then I know I have to put on more gear. I will have my thick wool sweater on already with my Arc’teryx winter shell hung up ready to go, long underwear always on, then my pants then Arc’teryx winter shell pants, my gloves, my toque/beanie/hat and then my lifejacket. Then my camera bag and within the bag is the rest of the camera gear including my landscape set up. I’ll have my Canon wide angle lens (either the Canon RF 15-35mm f/2.8 or Canon RF 24-70mm f/2.8 to shoot iceberg scenes while on the zodiac, Canon 70-200mm f/2.8 for animal scape photos (zoomed out wildlife in habitat). With my circular polarizer also ready to go in the bag. When you’re in Svalbard, a polarizer as previously mentioned is such a great tool to use to see the under portion of the iceberg.

photography expedition in Greenland

Section 5: Post Production

44. Choose images to edit first and cull your collections before diving in to edit

There is a problem with the digital photography world and this is image overload. I want to let you know, you should never edit every single image you take. That is a complete waste of your precious time. You can utilize paid software like Photomechanic and before actually importing your images you can preview them in high resolution without loading time and choose only the images you want. Otherwise you can import all of your images into Lightroom and then go through them and mark as “x” rejected for terrible images (super blurry, soft or poor composition), “3” if you need a second look / unsure and “5” to edit right away.

45. Edit your images with intention – choose the best images to edit not all of them

As mentioned in the previous tip, choosing which photos catch your attention first are usually the ones you should focus on first. Then the ones marked “3” you can go through them with a fine toothed comb to actually determine if they have potential. Sometimes, when culling initially we may miss something so do not delete your images. Especially if you missed the focus slightly or have some motion blur as you can use AI products like Topaz Labs to fix a lot of photographer errors.

46. Utilize colour grading in Lightroom and use this to help with the mood

As you work on global adjustments from exposure, to contrast, to highlights and shadows to whites and blacks your colour saturation will be affected. Likely as you edit a RAW image you’re going to be adding contrast to your landscape scenes. The reason why colour grading is so far down the right hand column in Lightroom is because this should be your last step to manage the mood and feel for the scene. Avoid using white balance to control your mood of your landscape scene as the resulting images often look fake and forced.

photoshop tips 9
photoshop tips 8
photoshop tips 7

Speaking to this edit, the global adjustments are in the photo above showcasing that my aim was to add contrast to the closer mountain and to exaggerate the light on the top right section of the scene.

photoshop tips 6

As I show the tone curve, this is a heavy contrast curve to further enhance the depth and mysterious mood that I aim to create.

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photoshop tips 2

As we go into colour grading with the Hue, Saturation and Luminosity sliders I have tweaked the colours to suit my aesthetic. I wanted to eliminate the purple in the scene and have more blues present with an aqua or green tone. In the colour grading panel I adjusted the midtones and the shadows with these particular settings as an overlay. The images before and after are dramatic changes with the aim to bring a dramatic effect to this extremely jagged shark tooth looking mountain scene in Greenland.

photoshop tips 1
landscape photography in Greenland

The final touches on this image were graduated filters with different exposures meant to exaggerate the mid day light from the right to left into the scene.

47. Enhancement of highlights and shadows creates depth – dodging and burning technique

Dodging and burning is a super popular technique for landscape photography. This technique allows you to add contouring and depth to your image as well as help aid the viewer’s eye throughout the scene. When adjusting areas to be brighter (dodging) and areas to be darker (burning) your goal is not to make the scene look fake but to exaggerate the lighting conditions to emphasize the main focal point.

48. When editing high dynamic range images use exposure blending instead of HDR modes for really complex lighting situations

Using exposure blending and masking in Photoshop is a complicated process for a photographer who does not use Photoshop but it’s a more accurate representation of the scene that you witnessed in person compared to an HDR output in LIghtroom. However, if you’re in a pinch and need to edit your bracketed images use Lightroom’s photo merge technique to create a high dynamic range landscape image.

49. Putting Panoramas together in Lightroom

When merging images together, click the first image and the last image from your panorama shoot while holding shift then right click, photo merge then to panorama. This will give you a fast output but if you want to enhance it even further you can create the panorama in Photoshop and preserve the pixel long and short edge but using content aware fill on the areas that the panorama missed.

photoshop tips
landscape photography tips photoshop
landscape photography tips Greenland landscape

Cycle through which projection looks the best for your panorama output. In this particular case, Spherical looked the best. Fill the edges will also help expand your total panorama image output size.

Time for my last the last of my landscape photography tips!

50. Focus stack your images in photoshop

In lightroom highlight your images that were used to focus stack, right click edit in photoshop. First organize them by focus areas from foreground as the bottom layer, to middle ground focus to the middle layer and the background focused layer on top. Then edit, and auto align then with all layers re-selected to edit stack images. Now you will have layer masks that you can zoom in while editing to ensure the software works. Otherwise manually mask in the focus stacking effect if you have extensive photoshop experience.

I hope that this article on landscape photography tips will help you develop your landscape photography skills even further and that you join an Arctic photography expedition with me in the future so we can shoot in the field together!

To join a Secret Atlas Photo Tour please see here. 

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