Landscape Exposure

December 08, 2017  •  Leave a Comment

Black Beaches of VikBlack Beaches of VikNear Vikings in southern Iceland there are black beaches and wonderful rock formations to spark your imagination. Landscapes can be difficult to photograph due to the wide range of light and contrast typical in nature.  I usually expose for the brightest portion of a scene, and lighten the super dark areas in post-processing.  However, depending on what you want the viewer to focus on, it could be the other way around!  

In the photo above, on the southern coast of Iceland, the sun was setting which gave off a little spark of light in the otherwise dreary environment.  I exposed for the brighter area from the sun shining on the sand and was lucky the clouds and water were exposed pretty well.  I tried other exposure settings, but when exposing for the dark sand, the sky and clouds were too bright, loosing all the ambiance of this scene.  

There's definitely is a trick to finding the right exposure for any given situation.  Some photographers use spot exposure to really capture the essence of one specific area of the scene.  I choose to use a blend or matrix setting so that the area focused on has the most exposure weight, but the rest of the scene is also considered. This usually gives the entire scene a chance to be exposed properly without much post-processing.

Landscape photography is an art, and there are tons of techniques to use.  The number one thing you should do is learn your camera settings and experiment!  You'd be surprised how different a photo can look if you under or over expose certain areas of a scene.  It can totally change the mood and colors.  Good luck with your photography and keep trying new things!

 

 


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