Tuesday’s tip. Taking better landscapes.

                                           lone tree outside Briancon, France.

  • Use a tripod:  your landscape photography will benefit from using a tripod.  You will slow down,  work deliberately & consider your composition.  You can choose greater depth of field and use slower shutter speeds too.

                                          Dublin bay, Ireland.

  • Depth of field; using a smaller aperture (bigger number) give a greater zone of focus meaning that more of your scene will be sharp and in focus.

Pinnacles and black beach at Vic, Iceland.

  • Pay attention to the horizon; make sure its straight & level, you can do this by sight or you can purchase a small hot-shoe mounted spirit level.   Consider where you place it in the frame.  The position of the horizon has a major imp at on the composition.

Lake Thingvellir, Iceland.

  • Change your perspective; Before you set up your tripod and camera consider your vantage point.  Is this the best place to photograph your subject from?  Is there a more interesting view-point?  Sometimes all it takes is a small change in position like dropping the camera down low on the ground or maybe walking a little further.

                                         O Dowd’s castle, Easky Co Sligo Ireland.

  • Foreground interest;  What you place in the foreground of your photographs makes a big impact on a photograph because they help lead the viewer into the image.

                                         Connemara ponies, Connemara Ireland.

  • Use a leading lines.  As above, leading lines help the viewer read the picture better because they lead the eye into the image.

                                         Snaefellnes peninsula, Iceland.

  • Think about light; light is the fairy dust of landscape photography!  Think about the direction and the quality of the light.  Low contrast, soft light is best for photography and in general you will find this early in the morning and late in the evening.  Cloudy days are also good as the cloud acts to diffuse the light from the sun.   Working with the golden hours of the day can make a difference too, I use the golden hour application on my Iphone to calculate the golden hour for different locations at different times of year.


  • There is no such thing as bad weather:  Contrary to common belief bad weather is good weather for photography.  It adds drama and mood to your photographs and the light is softer and better for photography.  Next time you see a storm coming or heavy rain, fog or mist grab your gear and head outdoors.  Note; You may want to protect your camera and equipment from the rain.  I find a couple of elastic bands and a shower cap work really well.

                                           Doge’s Palace, Venice.

  • Lastly three tips in one; Practice, practice, practice so get out there today!

Would you like to own an original print?  E-mail (bcooneyphotography@me.com) me for further details!

About briancooney123

HOW I GOT HERE Of course, I wasn’t always a full time photographer. I spent a lot of time in the corporate world. I had a job which paid well, but just didn’t excite me. I remember the day when I had had enough. Enough of selling myself short, enough of dreaming too small, enough of doing what others expected of me. I had put away my dreams and told myself I would get back to them later, but somehow there always seemed to be something else that had to get done first. A friend of mine had recommended I take the NLP Business Practitioners course, and although I was really busy, I decided to do it. During that time, I began to imagine the different paths my life could take from here. While I had a hazy picture of what this other life might look like, I had a clear picture of where my current life was going if I didn’t change. It was a scary moment, a bit like standing on the edge of a cliff deciding whether to jump into the great unknown or stay on the cliff, safe but trapped. I jumped. The transition to the life I wanted was challenging The transition to the life I wanted was challenging but I would never go back. After that day I resolved to do what I love, to follow my bliss.  Picking up a camera after several years away, I found that many things had changed, the digital age had arrived. In the intervening years, I was too busy to pay any attention to my photography, and occasionally when I took something I really liked, I would think “how do some photographs seem so captivating and others leave me completely cold?” I knew this is what I was meant to do Somehow though, I knew this is what I was meant to do. I dedicated myself to learning everything I could about being a photographer. I took many, many courses and I read every book I could get my hands on, I still do. Since then, I have dedicated myself to helping other creative photographers achieve the results they want. And what a journey it has been. Last year I qualified as a coach. My main area of interest is creativity and helping others to express their vision. WHAT I BELIEVE Along the way, I’ve learnt that there are no rules. Experiment, explore, play. My advice is to make your art from your heart, not for the praise or the money.  Lighten up. It’s important to take your photography seriously, but it's a mistake to take yourself too seriously. Finally, you get what you want when you never, ever give up so enjoy every minute of it and just do it!
This entry was posted in Tips and Technique, Uncategorized and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

36 Responses to Tuesday’s tip. Taking better landscapes.

  1. Great tips & great pics. You rock, Brian. 🙂

  2. Bill Chance says:

    Really great tips. I like the advice – “Find the light first.”

    Thanks for sharing.

  3. nonoymanga says:

    Excellent post!!! Cheers Nonoy Manga

  4. adrianduque89 says:

    This is an excellent post! Very helpful! Thanks for sharing!

  5. Jane Lurie says:

    Excellent photos and helpful reminders. Love the ponies and using the road as a leading line –one of my favorite techniques. Thanks for a thoughtfully done post.

  6. Alex Khoo says:

    Very nice pictures here!!

  7. Val says:

    Great tips, thanks!

  8. Deema says:

    I really love your photography and i thought if you could give me some tips and advices if you visit my blog,

  9. loving the blog… what are you doing your post processing on? will you share your secrets??

    • Hi Yvonne, black and white processed in PS5. Colour mostly processed in LR4. Secrets? Well I have a very quick workflow that I have developed over time. Quick because as a photographer I want to be taking photos not sitting in front of a screen. It really consists of this: Get the exposure right at time of capture, I do my cropping and any small exposure adjustments in LR4. If its a colour file I adjust contrast and saturation if its B&W into PS5 convert to B&W, then adjust contrast and dodge or burn as required. If I have the exposure right this is minimal. Lastly check for and remove sensor dust. Thats it really the rest is up to nature!

  10. Wonderful clear tips (and gorgeous shots) – thanks for sharing your craft!

  11. Incredible! One day I’d love to do one of your tours, but I’m not in your category at this point. Wonderful work!

  12. xpat92 says:

    Hi Brian,
    Wonderful tips to work with. Thank you!
    I wanted to ask what type of lens do you find to be better suited to landscapes? Is it better to have a wide angle lens? I have a Sigma 18-200 mm which I try to use to my best ability. It is a wonderful lens with a lot of clarity & detail. But, I feel that my landscapes could be better.
    Thanks for your insight.

    • Hi barb,
      Your 18-200 is a fine lens for landscape. It could be lots of things, start looking at the ones your not happy with and figure out why they don’t please you. It does take work and I still take a lot of photos that later when I look at them I am not satisfied with. I try to figure out is the problem technical like sharpness or more aesthetical as in something in the composition. I may go back and rework the image again and again until I get something I like or I may decide that I should drop it and move on.

  13. Beautiful pictures!

  14. bikegypsy says:

    Great stuff really… on your way to becoming a master

  15. ceppek says:

    great pict.. like it!

  16. JimR says:

    Great advice Brian and great images.

  17. Great images and I agree with JimR terrific advice. It is always great to learn something new

  18. Amy says:

    Great post! Thank you so much for sharing!

  19. MikeP says:

    I think you nailed all the tips…. as I am getting older I find my horizon lines are dipping 🙂

  20. Cheryl says:

    Fabulous tips, Brian. My challenge is doing justice to the forest at the lake. The property is densely wooded and beautifully populated by 75 to 80 foot white pines that survived the logging purge of the early 1900’s. I’ve been trying for years … and only have one image I’m proud of!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s