Landscape Photography Tips That Have Nothing to Do With Gear (8)

August 23, 2015  •  Leave a Comment

I'm posting landscape and outdoor photography tips that don't have anything to do with camera gear. That's not to say they aren't things, you just might not pack them into your camera bag.  Today's tip probably should have been tip number one, it's the best tip that I have and it's the one that I absolutely loathe.

Set Your Alarm Clock

I have three alarm clocks.  I hate all three of them.  They are extremely effective and surprisingly impact resistant. 

Brandenburg Gate, Berlin IIBrandenburg Gate, Berlin II
Brandenberg Gate in Berlin is an absolute circus during the day, but once the sun goes down it's much more peaceful. Mr. Bastard and I spent a lot of time sitting on the sidewalk, enjoying convenience store beer and waiting for the place to settle in order to snap this photo.

One way to guarantee getting a photo that doesn’t look like every other photo out there, is to shoot during the times when less people are likely to be viewing a particular scene. I know the popular saying is “Nothing good ever happens after 2 am” but for a photographer, that doesn’t quite hold true.

You've probably heard of "The Golden Hour" and "The Blue Hour"  they're good hours, sometimes they even last more than an hour and sometimes they're over in 10 minutes. It's the time around sunrise and sunset when the light is pretty, the sky is lovely and the rest of the world is usually either tucked safely in their beds or sitting around the dinner table.  Try not to think about how nice their life is compared to yours right now, those people - cozy in their beds dreaming. Those people, surrounded by delicious home cooked meals and family, the sound of gentle laughter wafting through the air.  You - crouched down in a manure laden field, gingerly feeling around in the dark for a poo-free place to rest your hand.  The dew drops soaking through your sneakers while you sit silently, freezing and being viciously mauled by 300 pound mosquitoes. The 6 cups of coffee you used to power through the 2 am alarm clock pounding on your bladder door.   Remember you're there for the photo. Do it for the photo.

3 am is a Beautiful Time to be Alive in Iceland3 am is a Beautiful Time to be Alive in IcelandIn my only pair of jammies, rolling around in sheep manure at 3 am.

3 AM under a midnight sun in Iceland. 


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