Photographing Fantastic Fall Foliage
Fall’s beauty is in full bloom, and photographers across the country are clamoring to capture the amazing turn of seasons. The trees drip with rich colors resembling garnet and jade jewels, the cool air whisks away the remains of a hot summer and the air is filled with anticipation for family-filled holidays. If you’d like to take some of fall’s finest moments and tuck them away to enjoy once the snow falls and the trees’ leaves fade away, here are a few tips:
Shoot Early or Late
Consider shooting during sunrise and sunset hours for the best lighting opportunities as these times can help you capture the richness of color around you. The morning hours may yield the best results because the air will be cleaner and largely free of dust, smog and other airborne particles. Those minute flecks in the air can have an impact on the richness and clarity of your images.
Wait for the Clouds
If you’re trying to capture the vibrancy of autumn leaves and colors, patience pays. Overhead clouds can help retain the depth of color in the foliage whereas direct sunlight is often extremely harsh and can wash out the colors you are trying to capture.
Experiment with a Polarizing Filter
While it may not work in every situation, a polarizing filter can help in those situations where bright sunlight might flatten fall colors. Don’t be afraid to experiment with different tools during your session; when you take the time to try new things, you discover additional tricks to add to your photography arsenal.
The rainbow of colors fall provides is even more gorgeous when coupled with contrast. A ruby leaf paired with green grass or weathered wood can create a more powerful image than either item photographed alone.
Part of the beauty of fall can be captured in its simplicity. Zoom in close and focus on a single leaf or a small cluster of them. Spend a few minutes surveying your surroundings to find the perfect subject. It may be something completely unexpected such as an unassuming park bench or a solitary bird.
If it happens to rain in the location you wish to photograph, celebrate! The images you can capture after a rain occurs may just take your breath away. The leaves are clean and vibrant and the rain will clear away dust and other items that may get in the way of the perfect shot.
Play with Settings
If your digital camera includes settings to shoot in ‘vivid’ mode or has options to adjust saturation, use those settings to determine if the results are richer than what you would create in your standard automatic mode. You can also experiment with ‘cloudy’ settings on overcast days. Being open to experimentation may bring images that surprise and delight!