Nature photography refers to the art of capturing photos that include living creatures, landscapes, beaches, water falls, and birds or in other words ones that depict nature. These photos provide great pleasure to the viewer and depict the aesthetic sense of the photographer.
There are many photographers who specialize in nature photography and have skills, experience and a hard-working nature to produce quality work. Like any other art, nature photography requires skills, equipment, effort and talent to compete in the industry.
Let us take a review of some of the attributes that play an important role in nature photography and help an amateur photographer in exploring his/her nature photography skills.
Nature photography requires a great aesthetic sense. It demands the ability to use the right combination of background, foreground and everything in between in combination with time. You have to play around to find the best angle to take a photograph. As a photographer your aesthetic sense influences the direction of your creativity. You need to experiment on seemingly odd things such as blurred images and see how they feel.
Cameras and Lenses To Use
Digital SLR cameras are recommended for nature photography but that doesn’t restrict you to expensive ones only. If you are an enthusiast, any camera would do! Look out for the cameras that allow you override the automatic settings or in other words give you full control.
In nature photography, you have ample time to adjust all the parameters to take that perfect snap. But the camera’s quality won’t matter a lot if you have ordinary lenses or skills to shoot. Both wide-angle and telephoto lenses are used in nature photography.
The above mentioned lenses fulfill the contrasting requirements of landscape photos and wild life photography where the first one is used for landscape and the later for wild life.
Wide angle lenses have focal length of 15-35mm where as the telephoto lenses range from 85mm to 700mm or above.
There are certain subcategories of nature photography where in addition to the cameras and lenses, tripods and monopods form the critical component of a photographer’s kit. Wild life photography is a good example of it.
You will also need backup batteries and compatible chargers. If your camera uses memory cards take an extra with you. If for any reason you are using film rolls then keep their back up as well, as they are hard to find even in towns these days.
Timing & Distance
Nature photography requires you to travel long distances and reach the required destination at the right time. You won’t be able to find the breath-taking autumn scenes on the foothills at a desert place in the spring season.
Nature photography is greatly influenced by the natural factors such as haze, dust and time of the day. Some artificial factors such as smoke and dust are also worth considering when shooting natural scenes. Mostly the atmosphere is clean after a rain and that is the most appropriate period of taking snaps. Nature photos are generally taken during the morning or evening hours. But it all depends on which kind of effect you want in your photos. Some photographers have their own code of conduct and they follow that. The best way to understand your shot’s timings is to take it at different timings and choose the best one!
HDR photography is one of the most interesting post photography methods that would help enhance the overall feel of the photo. But rest of the magic still lie in hands of the photographer!
Nature photography is as enjoyable as it demands hard work. Don’t forget to enjoy the scenes you shoot as you won’t be able to feel them that way in pictures.
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