6 Fine Art Nature Photography Tips to Inspire Beginners
Whether it’s a sprawling landscape, a delicate flower, or a playful animal, there are countless wonders to be found all around us. As our world seems to become crazier and crazier, beautiful images of nature are even more sought after. But many photographers struggle with how to take their nature photography from “snapshots” to fine art.
Almost any activity you do on a daily basis can turn into an art form with the right mindset and approach. Photography is no exception. If you’re looking to take your fine art nature photography skills to the next level, you’re in luck.
Before you head out on your next outdoor adventure, make sure to read these six tips to help you out.
1. Use a Tripod
A tripod is an essential tool for any photographer who wants to capture sharp, detailed images. By stabilizing the camera, a tripod allows the photographer to use creative camera settings without fear of introducing camera shake.
By keeping the camera steady, you can capture sharp images of moving subjects, such as flowing water or swaying trees. In addition, a tripod can be helpful when taking photos in low-light conditions such as clear photos of the night sky or a dimly lit forest.
Tripods also allow for more precise compositions, as they give the photographer the time and freedom to experiment with different framing and perspective options.
When shooting nature photography, tripods can be particularly useful for capturing close-up shots of flowers or insects. By getting the camera close to the ground and using a tripod, photographers can achieve unique perspectives and highlight small details that might otherwise be lost.
In order to take full advantage of a tripod, photographers should invest in a tripod that is sturdy enough to support their camera equipment. They should also consider purchasing a tripod head, which will allow them to pan and tilt the camera more smoothly.
With a tripod, nature photographers are freer to unleash their creativity and explore new ways of seeing the world around them.
2. Shoot in RAW Format
Are you constantly struggling to get the colors and tones right in your images? If so, it might be time to start shooting in RAW format.
RAW is a file format that contains all of the data captured by your camera’s sensor. Unlike a JPEG, which is a compressed file format, a RAW file retains all of the original data. This means that RAW files contain more image data than JPEGs, so they allow for more flexibility when editing photos. By shooting in RAW you’ll have more control over things like brightness, contrast and color saturation, resulting in photos that look more natural and realistic.
When you take photos of nature, it’s important to use the best settings possible to capture the beauty of your surroundings. So if you’re serious about capturing stunning nature scenes, be sure to buy a camera that can shoot in RAW! There are some great sites that allow you to compare camera specs until you figure out the best one for you!
3. Experiment with Different Perspectives and Angles
Every nature photographer has their own style and method for capturing the beauty of the outdoors. One way to experiment with your photography is to try different perspectives and angles. This can add an extra layer of creativity and depth to your photos.
There’s a wealth of different perspectives to try. To get started, let’s have a go of some creative views with nature-related names:
Worms Eye View
This creative approach involves getting down on the ground and shooting from below your subject. Essentially, you photograph your subject from below, looking up at them. This angle can create some really interesting effects and can make your subject look more powerful or imposing. To create some really striking compositions try photographing some abstract elements in this manner.
Birds Eye View
When most people think of bird’s eye view photography, they imagine pictures taken from high up in a plane or even a hot air balloon. But you don’t need to go that far for bird’s eye nature photos!
When you are caught in a creative rut, try shooting from a higher vantage point to capture your subject in a whole new light. This can be as simple as holding your camera directly above the subject you are shooting or finding higher ground from cliffs or mountain tops to take a whole scene.
Play around with focal points and composition until you create an image that speaks to you. Don’t be afraid to take risks – after all, that’s how we learn and grow as artists!
4. Shoot During Peak Times of Day for Best Lighting Conditions
If you’re serious about photography, then you know already that lighting is key. To add flair to your nature photos you need to experiment with different lighting conditions.
Correctly utilising light color is a powerful tool for nature photographers. Many nature photographers love to use the power of the golden hour. This golden light occurs early morning and evening light and offers the most beautiful and flattering tones for your subject. If you’re looking to capture some magic in your shot, try scheduling your photoshoot during these times!
The blue hour is another favourite of nature photographers. This time during twilight gives a mysterious blue glow to the surrounding light and our mages.
For fine art photos, you may want to try out some out-of-the-box lighting conditions.If you want to get creative try taking the same scene at different times of the day. This way you will have a gradient of lighting condition photos and can choose the right time for your style!
5. Allow Yourself to Connect
We all know the saying, “stop and smell the roses.” However, sometimes in our busy lives, we forget to take a moment to truly experience the beauty that surrounds us. Photography is a great way to connect with the beauty of nature, but when you spend too much time behind a lens, you can lose touch with the real world. If you find yourself stuck for inspiration, it may be time to stop and draw a breath. When you take the time to connect with nature, you’ll be amazed at how much more peaceful and inspired you feel.
Before framing that perfect fine art nature photo, make sure to take some time to appreciate your surroundings for yourself first. Be aware of the potential for fine art nature photography in your own house or yard. The secret life of a pet or a sunlit spiderweb can sometimes be as stunning as a glacier. That’s the power of fine art.
One of my top tips for any aspiring nature photographer is to really connect with nature in their own life before taking that photography to the wilderness. Before you take out your camera, slow down and really observe your surroundings. You’ll be surprised that you can find nature in every scenario. When the pressure to produce art is removed, then fine art can finally bloom.
6. Find Your Own Style and Voice as a Photographer
There are no right or wrong ways to capture a moment. However, finding your own unique style and voice as a photographer is what will set you apart from the rest.
This is something that will take time. Don’t try to adopt a specific style until you have truly taken some time to experiment. By exploring different techniques, you’ll begin to develop your own photography style.
Keep an open mind and be willing to learn. Research famous and emerging fine art photographers in every their fine art nature photography. By looking at great photos by other photographers, you’ll get ideas for shots that reflect your own personal vision. Finally, staying open-minded and continuing to learn will help you evolve as a photographer – always challenging yourself to create something new. So go out there and start shooting! Your unique photographic voice is waiting to be discovered.
There is so much undeniable and unspeakable beauty in nature. The way the sun filters through the trees, the way a river flows and the way the stars sparkle in the sky can all be breathtaking. The task of the artist is to represent its beauty but not simply mirror it. For photographers, this task is a passion and a craft.
So, what are you waiting for? Get outside and start snapping photos! As you continue to experiment with different techniques and find your own personal style, the sky is the limit in terms of what you can create.