PLAN YOUR SHOOT : Landscape photography is all about patience, preparation and planning. Read and understand the weather a good weather forecast is important when you are dragging out yourself  of bed at 5 in the morning in search of a good landscape . It happens sometime you get a very nice shot during the time of a heavy storm or immediately after the storm has passed and the weather starts to get clear probably sometimes it's the best time to shoot. So plan your shoot accordingly what exactly you want do.


COMPOSITION FOR LANDSCAPE PHOTOGRAPHY : Composition plays an important role in making it an average picture to turn out to be an eye pleasing shot,  if a picture is not well composed it may not strike the viewer's eyes.


1. Rule Of Thirds : The first step to improve your composition is to understand the Rule of Thirds when , where and how to apply it . In simple words rule of thirds means instead of placing your subject right in the centre keep your subject to the 1/3rd part of your frame.


2. Free space is strength : its not always necessary to fill up the entire frame. Sometimes its good to leave space in front of your subject. Is adds a dramatic effect in the image.


3. composing the image : build your eyes to look for  lines and patterns. They give direction to your picture and help highlight the quality of your subjects. Lines catches the viewers’ attention into or out of the picture. place  a subject for the center of attraction and then find lines that lead to it. 



All DSLR cameras offer a variety of selection of lenses for their cameras. These range from fisheyes that give a 180° field of view, to telephoto lenses up to 800mm or more. You’ve got zooms, primes, macro, super telephoto, and of course, tilt-shift lenses as well.  


The wide angle lens is traditionally the go-to lens for landscape photographers.  On full frame digital SLR’s this would be anything from about 14mm through 35mm, depending on the manufacture.  For cropped sensor digital SLRs, specific wide angle lenses, like the Sigma 12-24mm zoom give the equivalent of an 18-36mm lens, still allowing a very wide shot.  The wide angle id desirable because it allows for a larger then life perspective on your landscape, capturing what’s immediately in front of you, at your feet all the way through the edge of one’s peripheral vision.  It’s the go-to lens for many landscape photographers.

Medium length lenses, say about anything from 40-150mm are great for capturing landscapes as your naked eye sees them, plus or minus taking a few steps towards or from the subject.  These lenses generally perform best when the subject matter is more specific, as in the photo below.

some of the most stunning landscapes are shot during sunrise and sunset, this often puts the sun in a direct line of sight with the lens, causing nasty lens flare.  Ovoid this by utilizing a proper lens hood to reduce the amount of flare.  In some cases you may even find holding your hand above the lens, beyond the hood can help block more lens flare; a hat, magazine or any other large object can also be used.  The other advantage of a lens hood is it helps protect the lens element against accidental bumps and because of the shadowing from stray sunlight, photos tend to be deeper and richer in color.




Wide-angle lenses, perfect for landscape. Because they can fit a lot into the picture, you can capture much of the landscape foreground, a feature, and perhaps the sky. As they tend to have a greater depth of field, it is easier to have sharp pictures. They are also wonderful for building and architecture shots, as you can use the wide angle to give a great sense of space. They can vary from 10mm up to 35mm (but bear in mind the multiplication factor with a digital camera). 

  • They have more depth of field at any given aperture setting and camera to subject distance than telephotos. It is simple to stop down and obtain front to back sharpness.
  • The perspective of the wide-angle lens draws the viewer into the image and adds a sense of depth by making the horizon seem further away than it really is. You can see the effect in this landscape taken with a zoom lens set to a focal length of 26mm 



Canon EF-S 17-85mm f/4-5.6 IS USM (ultra wide angle zoom lens) 
This is a good all purpose lens that goes from ultra wide 17mm, all the way to a normal focal length of 85mm. It's also not too large and heavy to carry. Another advantage is its image stabilization system that makes taking hand-held shots easier. Fantastic for those photographers who are just starting out and don't want to spend a fortune, yet still need good quality photographs. You'll notice many landscape photo's found throughout this website are taken with Canon EF-S 17-85mm IS USM lens.


Canon EF 24-105mm f/4 L IS USM (wide angle zoom lens) This landscape lens is for Canons more professional end of the market. It also goes from one wide angle extreme (24mm) to a higher 105mm focal length. It's currently priced at $1046 USD. Similar to the one above, it also has the option of image stabilization.


Canon EF 17-40mm f/4.0 L USM (ultra wide angle zoom lens) 
One of Canon's best selling lens due to it's low cost, considering it's high quality. If you see a Canon lens with a red circle around the tip, you know it's considered better quality (sharper images) than those without the ring. This one is currently priced at $674 USD. However, you do need to take into consideration that this particular wide angle lens doesn't zoom in as far (40 mm) as the other two listed above. 





1. POLARISING FILTER: Polarising filters increase saturation giving richer, more vibrant colours.

A polarizing filter is a must-have tool for landscape photography. It is typically the first filter landscape photographers buy to instantly improve their pictures and and add vividness and contrast to them. A polarizer can reduce reflections from objects such as water and glass and can be used to darken the sky, bring out the clouds and even reduce atmospheric haze, making the scene look much more vivid. For all normal lenses that have a filter thread in the front, you can get a circular polarizing filter, also known as a “circular polarizer”. A circular polarizer is very easy to use and once you attach it on the front of your lens, all you need to do is rotate it clockwise or counter-clockwise to get a different amount of polarization. Polarizing filters work by blocking certain light waves from entering the lens. Rotating a polarizer allows certain types of light waves to pass through, while blocking other ranges of light waves. Thus, you could turn a sky from light blue to very dark blue or increase/decrease reflections by simply rotating the filter.


2. NEUTRAL DENSITY FILTER: You have probably already seen images of running water and waterfalls that look very smooth and dreamy/foggy. This look can only be accomplished when your camera is mounted on a tripod and the shutter speed is very slow. In daylight conditions, decreasing ISO and increasing the F-number does not typically lower the shutter speed enough. The only solution in those situations is to decrease the amount of light that enters the lens and that’s where a neutral density filter comes into play. Neutral density filters reduce the amount of light that enters the camera lens and thus decrease the shutter speed and increase exposure time. Just like a polarising filter, the effect of a neutral density filter cannot be reproduced in post-processing.

3. GRADUATED NEUTRAL DENSITY FILTER A neutral density filter is called "neutral" because it doesn't affect the colours in your photo; its only purpose is to reduce the amount of light reaching your camera's sensor. Normal ND filters reduce light evenly across the whole scene, but graduated NDs have a gradient effect, changing from fully darkened at the top to completely transparent at the bottom. This means that the top of the lens lets in less light than the bottom. This is really useful in landscape photography, because you'll often find yourself shooting a scene with a bright sky and relatively dark ground. The graduated ND filter helps balance the exposure of the scene, allowing you to capture everything without losing detail in the highlights or shadows.







Great landscape photography is as much about planning, preparation and patience as it is about focal lengths, f-stops and filters. A few minutes spent checking the weather forecast, scouting the location and waiting for the right light can make an enormous difference to the final image.

Of course, your wait for the ‘right’ light will be a lot shorter if you head out at the right time of day. Shoot too close to noon in the summer and you’ll be rewarded with short, dense, black shadows and harsh highlights from the overhead sun, so that even a hilly landscape will look flat and uninteresting.   

The key to shooting in what’s often referred to as ‘the golden hour’ is to arrive well in advance so that the camera is set up on the tripod, the image is composed, and the filters are in place long before the perfect light appears.

In the morning this means getting up before dawn, which in the summer feels like the middle of the night! It’s worth it though, because pockets of early morning mist and a light sprinkling of dew can give landscapes a magical, untouched appearance that will give your 
images the edge.

If you really can’t bear to get up before dawn, the best alternative is to shoot at dusk. Obviously there won’t be any dew to twinkle in the low sunlight, but any flowers that close overnight will be fully open, and it’s easier to see the image you’re composing while you wait for the perfect light to arrive.



A lot of landscape photography is about capturing sweeping views. Wide-angle lenses are the logical choice because they allow you to get more into the frame. Anything with an effective focal length shorter than 50mm (or 35mm if you’re using an APS-C format camera) is considered a wide-angle lens, but 21mm and 24mm lenses are popular choices. To get an equivalent view on an APS-C camera you need to use a lens with a focal length of around 14mm-16mm 



Using the rule of thirds is simple but effective. When you’re composing an image, try to imagine that it’s divided up into three equal horizontal sections and three vertical sections. As you frame the image in front of you, try to arrange key elements along one of the lines or ‘thirds’, and where possible, position important features where the lines intersect each other.

With a landscape this could mean arranging the composition so that one third of the image contains sky, while the lower two thirds contain the land. Other elements, such as a tree in the foreground or a distant spire, can then be positioned where a vertical and a horizontal line cross.  

Using the rule of thirds can help prevent your image from looking like a random snapshot, but there are times when the subject really cries out for symmetry, and breaking the rule can add impact.



If you want sharp landscape images then a good, solid tripod is essential. A remote release is a sensible investment because this will enable you to trigger the shutter without touching the camera directly. If you forget your remote release, use your camera’s self-timer. An added advantage of using a tripod is that it slows you down, and this automatically makes your photography more considered.



Getting the foreground, middle distance and background of a landscape acceptably sharp means using a narrow aperture to get lots of depth of field.

Aperture priority is a good choice of exposure mode for this because it enables you to set the aperture while the camera determines the shutter speed . Make sure you don’t fall into the trap of using the very narrowest aperture available on your lens because this will often result in a soft image because of diffraction. Diffraction is the bending of light waves as they pass by the aperture blades – the narrower the aperture, the more significant it will be.

To avoid the problem, use an aperture of at least a stop or two wider than the lens’s minimum.



A low sensitivity setting is a passport to smooth, noise-free images with plenty of detail. Even at the low end, straying from the native sensitivity range usually results in some compromise in image quality – often reducing the dynamic range. For most DSLRs the lowest native sensitivity value is ISO100, but for some older models it’s ISO200. Using a low sensitivity setting along with a narrow aperture usually demands a slow shutter speed, and in most instances this means a tripod is required to get sharp images.