We’ve all stood in awe of some fantastic #naturephotography shots on social media. If you’re anything like me, you’d love to try your hand at it. Nowadays, even your phone can take decent digital pictures. If you’re a nature enthusiast and want to understand some of the best tips to get started, you’ve come to the right place!
Know Your Subject
First, you’ll have to ask yourself what is your subject? Are you shooting wildlife? Insects? Flowers? Landscapes? Sunsets? All of the above? Once you settle on your subject, you’ll be more inclined to find new and imaginative ways to take their picture. You’ll want to be mindful of needing to wait, perhaps all day, especially if you’re shooting wildlife or waiting for a specific time of day, for instance. Birds, especially, will need to have a patient photographer to get a shot worth anything. If you’re going for bigger game such as bears or moose, you’ll want to be a good distance away. You might consider buying yourself a wide-angle lens for your camera.
Consider a Telescoping Tripod
Whether a stubby tripod or a full-sized one, consider buying one for your nature excursions. Animals and scenery don’t always cooperate. Your arms, your legs, your back will get tired, no question. You might even get sleepy waiting for the perfect shot to present itself. Set up your tripod to keep your camera steady. Don’t cheat yourself out of the perfect shot simply because your arms were shaking. Most telescoping tripods can get quite small for strapping onto a backpack so they’re easier to pack into the wilderness. You’ll definitely want to pick one up the next time you go out.
Be Aware of Natural Light
Since you’re shooting in the rough, always be aware of your natural light. You won’t be able to set up your shot like you would in the studio, so make sure your shadow isn’t in the picture and that your subject is fully lit. Use water to reflect the light whenever you can. This will not only allow you to properly expose your shot but bring interest and originality to it as well. Is your subject reflected on the water? Is the sun itself reflected? Always be aware of how light can make or break your photograph. It’s best to think of your natural light as another subject for your shots.
Remember the Rule of Thirds
This rule is a hard and fast rule in photography. The idea is not to shoot your subject dead center of your picture, but to think of your photograph as a grid, divided into thirds vertically and horizontally. Interesting photographs frame their subjects creatively, so use the Rule of Thirds to your advantage here. Showcase a hummingbird and a flower within two separate “thirds” of a photograph, for instance, and the picture will become a beautiful memento.
Overall, have fun with your nature photography. Take yourself into the backwoods with plenty of snacks and have an excellent day taking Mother Nature’s portrait.
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