Photographers are a special type of people that usually pay a lot of attention to detail. They’re also known to be patient and perseverant. However, in my opinion, landscape photographers are a unique breed. I’m sure that only a hand full of people are willing to hike 10 miles with 25 pounds of photography gear on their back, just because they hope to seize the perfect moment.
Generally, in photography, practice leads to improvement. However, practicing landscape photography is a bit trickier since you don’t have control over the light setup, the weather, or the subject. Sometimes, you might plan a trip for three months; you research the best spots, and you bring all your equipment. Then, when it’s show time, you walk outside to face a cloudy, rainy day, if not a snowy mess. All that can be very frustrating. Over the years I’ve learned a few tricks to deal with that. In this article, I will share three simple tips to help improve your images and take better landscape photos, regardless of the weather.
1. Using clouds to avoid harsh light
Let’s start by talking about one of the most important topics in photography, light. Usually, landscape photographers revolve their schedule around the Golden Hour, meaning the early morning or late afternoon. Photographers choose those portions of the day to take full advantage of the magical, warm, rich, natural light available. Yet sometimes, you cannot reach the planned location by car, making a strenuous hike of 10 miles the only available option to get to the desired place. Hiking is great, and if you love landscape photography you probably love the close contact with nature, but sometimes this passion doesn’t translate into mountain exploration at 3:30 a.m. Occasionally, you will find yourself starting your day hike around 6:00 a.m. to reach the desired area around 10:00 a.m., meaning that you will have to work with hard sunlight.