Develop these four habits to help take your landscape photography to the next level
There are a lot of tips and advice out there for all kinds of different genres of photography. Most of them involve technique or buying more gear. Very little is about our behaviour and mindset. This video from Mark Denney, though, is a little different. In it, he presents four habits he’s developed over the last few years that have helped him with his workflow to improve his landscape photography.
While Mark freely admits that everybody’s workflow is different and not every tip is going to help everybody, these are some great suggestions. I follow a couple of these myself and they’ve made a big difference to my photography over the years. Maybe they’ll help yours, too.
- Drop all your gear when you show up and just explore
- Make multiple edits over several days
- Minimise and simplify your gear
- Shoot a storyboard
The biggest one for me, and something I’ve been doing for about 9 years now is the first one on Mark’s list. Particularly for shooting portraits in wilderness locations. When we show up at the spot we’re going to shoot, we dump all the gear and just go explore. It’s too easy to just rock up to a location and start shooting that you ignore everything else and Mark says the same of landscape photography, too. It helps you to get out of that “photographer” mindset for a bit, weighed down with gear, to just enjoy the location and see things that you might not otherwise notice.
The third in Mark’s list is another I try to follow, too. I used to take so much “just in case” gear that it just got to be too much to deal with on location. Now I bring things right down to the bare minimum I think I’ll need. My back is definitely grateful! Fewer gear options while you’re at the location also forces you to push yourself and your equipment more in order to try to do something new and different – even if it’s just new and different to you. It’s a great way to really get to know what you and your gear are capable of.
What habits do you follow for landscapes or any type of location shooting to make your life easier or improve your work?
John Aldred is a photographer with over 20 years of experience in the portrait and commercial worlds. He is based in Scotland and has been an early adopter – and occasional beta tester – of almost every digital imaging technology in that time. As well as his creative visual work, John uses 3D printing, electronics and programming to create his own photography and filmmaking tools and consults for a number of brands across the industry.