Return To Blog 29 February 2016

Three Little Wishes- Landscape/ Seascape Photography

Using a wide angle lens for landscape photography can be challenging. The main issue is often the background becoming insignificant and smaller, completely different to what our eyes see in terms of magnification.

Using a wide angle lens for landscape photography can be challenging. The main issue is often the background becoming insignificant and smaller, completely different to what our eyes see in terms of magnification.

What makes the wide angle lens work at its best is having some foreground to dominate or add interest to the image and leads the eye to the background.

The first example was a result of setting the camera close to some breaking surf with the sun setting behind clouds in the distant horizon.

Caramel Surf

The image shows the surf foam captured at a fast shutter speed. This is the main focus point and the background is less significant but shows the environment in which it was taken.

Another example is using a polarising filter to darken the blue sky in the background and using the foreground’s cupped depressions to focus on the texture and highlights from the wet surface.

This image was a Raw file and can be altered even further to accentuate the sky which is often more dramatic when converted to Black & White.

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A balance and significance of both foreground and background is achieved.

Sunny days can be a problem with high contrast. Using Raw files and converting into black and white can achieve a dramatic result. It also allows you to selectively darken or lighten a colour such as the blue sky.

Sometimes using colour and accentuating it is ideal. The image of the rescue ring attached to the cliff face is a good example of colour contrast.

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Neutral density filters are great to use, especially if you want moving water to look like silk. Often one has to use small apertures like f:22 and low ISO values to get these long exposures. Make sure your lenses and camera sensors are clean, or you will see all of these dust spots appearing in your image, especially using f:22.

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Mark Ryan

Three Little Wishes Tutor.