Photographing the world around you

Ron Johnson - Moogerah Morning - A Grade Honour

Ron Johnson – Moogerah Morning – A Grade Honour

By Julie Hartwig, Tin Can Bay Camera Club

Every time you take a photo of the scenery around you, you’re capturing one of the most popular genres of photography – Scapes. This broad category encompasses Landscapes, Seascapes, Cityscapes and Sky/Cloudscapes. These types of photos provide a record of our world and are a reminder of a special time and place.

Here are a few tips to improve your Scape photos:

  • Consider the time of day: The “Golden Hours” around sunrise and sunset deliver stunning lighting conditions and often beautiful colours. Combined, these create wonderful, moody photos.
  • Pay attention to composition: Give consideration to the placement of the horizon. Unless your scene includes reflections or a very symmetrical scene, place the horizon 1/3 from the top to accentuate foreground details or 1/3 from the bottom to accentuate sky details. This applies to both horizontal and vertical compositions.
  • Look for leading lines: If present in the scene, use roads, tracks, natural and man-made lines to lead the eye into the scene, thereby allowing the viewer to explore the photo.
  • Use compositional elements: These include colours, shapes, textures, patterns. The world around us has all of these – you just have to look deeper into the scene to find them and then decide how best to include them.
  • Look for unusual natural elements such as reflections, spectacular clouds, unusual features like rocks/mountains and water, and unusual lighting conditions. All of these will create mood in the photo.
  • Photo format: Landscapes are typically horizontal photos, but experiment with vertical compositions to give a different perspective on the landscape.
  • Get the horizon straight: One of the most distracting faults in Scape photography is a crooked/sloping horizon. Most cameras have some sort of level in the viewfinder/LCD screen to help get the horizon straight. Alternatively, you can use the edges of the screen to provide a straight guide line.

By using these tips, you can change your Scape photos from ordinary to stunning. Happy snapping – more tips next month!

The Camera Club’s next meeting: 7pm, Wednesday February 21 at TCB Library. For more information, visit

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