Landscape Photographer: How Hard Can Becoming One Be?

23rd August 2017

From the team at PhotoWhoa, who curate and promote awesome photography products that help you improve your photos, is a guest post on what's involved in becoming one of the Best Landscape Photographers.

You can check out their curated products, and learn from the best photographers in the world right here

Looking at stunning photos of the aurora borealis, one could wonder how hard taking such a picture could be? It’s just pointing the camera in the right direction and clicking a button, right? Wrong, becoming one of the Best Landscape Photographers is so much more complicated than that.

There is the lighting and the camera quality to consider, and that’s just the basics. Andrew Carter describes landscape photography as an image that has a purpose. It should tell a story, placing the viewer at the scene and evoking an array of emotions within them.

This requires skill, and cannot be achieved by simply turning the camera round and taking a snapshot. In order to become a landscape photographer, you need to be willing to take risks; to go on adventures, to brave the heights and ignore the cold.

Here are some tips that can help you to become a professional landscape photographer.

1) Be prepared

Anne McKinnell discusses the importance of being prepared in her e-book ‘Before The Shutter'. A landscape photographer, out in the open, will need to be ready for anything. The storm may be on the horizon and the light may flicker as the clouds move. In such situations, a skilled photographer will make every moment count. At the moment, the e-book is completely free. This is great because it’ll allow every young photographer out there grasp the skills needed to take stunning photographs.

2) Capturing the viewers’ attention!

In photography, half the challenge is capturing the viewer’s attention. Alexandre Buisse discusses his technique in the Best Landscape Photographers Collective Vol. 1. You could adapt his style of capturing pure, raw danger. Alternatively, you could try to capture images that revive nature, taking something that’s deceptively simple and turning it into a work of art. Carla Fernandez Andrade, another photographer in the collection, could give you some great advice on finding the best places to capture.

3) Lighting

This is perhaps one of the key elements of photography. Lighting can make an image look glum or terrifying. It can even make a boring, sad image look revived and happy! If you are a landscape photographer, keen on taking pictures of nature, you should take the time of day and the weather into account before you shoot!

4) Composition

The composition can simply involve colors or it can refer to pictures being placed together to form stunning photographs. The latter is a style adopted by both Jeremy Dyer and Pep Ventosa in the Best Landscape Photographers Collective Vol. 1. Dyer takes pieces of other ‘found photography’ to create stunning, intense landscapes while Ventosa uses shapes, and colors to distort an image and turn into something mesmerizing. Reading their interview could help you to create something awe inspiring too!

5) Capture the quiet, before the storm!

In photography, timing matters. A second can make the difference between capturing a gorgeous sunset, and a murky colored view. To capture a brilliant image, you could try setting your camera up and taking multiple photos at once. You never know what you’ll miss if you blink or sneeze but a good camera won’t miss much. Try reading the interview by Morgan Levy in the Best Landscape Photographers Collective Vol. 1, you might pick up some crucial tips. She’s known for her ability to capture the ‘impenetrable’ stillness of a scene.

6) Location may not matter

Being a skilled photographer means making the most of every situation. Practice and experimentation can help you do this. A skilled eye, nurtured with time and experience will allow you to make the most of the back alleys, abandoned buildings, and dirty streets. Try reading Eirik Johnson’s interview in the Best Landscape Photographers Collective Vol. 1, the tips he gives could start you off on this artistic journey.

7) A good camera

A camera can really make a difference. It can’t replace skill, but it can definitely help you on your way. There is a range of cameras in the market, you don’t have to stick to a clunky DSLR. There are attachments for your smartphone camera that allow you to take high-quality images on the go. Saying that, if you would like some advice on developing your photography intuition, check out the interview with Linda Alterwitz in the Best Landscape Photographers Collective Vol. 1.

8) Telling a story

When people snap a selfie or a family photo, it’s usually because they are trying to capture a memory. In a few years, they will look out and think ‘hey on that day, this happened!’ It’s the same with landscape photography, expect as a professional you’ll want to tell your viewers a story rather than simply capture a memory. This can be hard, but it certainly isn’t impossible. After all, Derek Shapton manages to do it and was willing to give you some great advice in the Best Landscape Photographers Collective Vol. 1.

In the end, what does it take to be amongst the Best Landscape Photographers?
You need to develop skills through practice and experimentation and be willing to persevere through failure.

This will help you to learn the type of stories you like to tell, the kinds of situations that are best portrayed in your photography and the lengths that you're willing to go to capture them. Just remember, ‘there is always more than meets the eye’ you just need to be willing to see it!

To improve your photography, and be the best landscape photographer you can be, don't forget to visit

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