You see them all the time, fantastic photos that people have taken out in nature. So, how do they get pictures that great? and all of yours seem sort of plain? Here are a few tips to taking your own amazing nature photos.
Study. Remember in school how studying always got you better grades? Nature photography can work to some extent the same way. A few weeks before your vacation go to the library or bookstore and pick up a few books on nature photography. You don’t need a how to book; really what you’re looking for are collections of photos taken by nature photographers. Look through the book and take note of how the picture appears to have been taken. What do you like about it? What don’t you like about it? Looking at what other people have done can give you ideas when your out in the field trying to take pictures of your own.
If you’re going on a trip to take pictures of a particular bird or animal, do your research on your topic. Know the habits of the animal, where you’re going to find it, and how to behave around it. You’ll be glad you did your studying when it comes time to take your pictures.
Get a manual focus camera. Sure your digital camera is fantastic, but if you truly want to take fantastic nature photographs, then you are going to need a camera with a manual focus. You can purchase digital cameras with a manual focus, but they will often cost you a pretty penny. If a digital SLR isn’t in your price range, seriously consider purchase a film SLR, you’ll be glad you did. The quality of your pictures will increase dramatically when you have the ability to change lenses, and rack the focus of your photos.
Be patient. The best nature photographs are not the ones that you seek out, but the ones you stumble upon. Take a relaxing walk through the woods, or around a lake. Go boating, have fun in the outdoors. Just happen to have your camera with you when that perfect photo becomes available.
Use a fast shutter speed. Nature is always changing. Make sure you catch the photo opportunity you’re looking for by having a camera with a fast shutter speed. The faster the shutter speeds the easier it will be for you to capture the moment, rather than miss it by a few seconds.
Experiment. A 10 year old can take a picture of a flower. Before you take the picture look around, and think about how you could make the photograph interesting. There are tons of things you can do that can dramatically enhance a nature photograph. Change the angle of your shot, change where your focus is. Maybe the flower isn’t in the foreground it is in the background of your photo.
Don’t be afraid to take chances, the best photos are the ones that take what could have been an ordinary photo and make it extraordinary. A manual focus can help make your photos creative. A fast shutter speed can help you not miss a shot. The more creative you are with your pictures, the better they often are.