There are plenty of amazing landscape photographers out there whose work we follow and admire. But other than creating fantastic images, there are some other traits they share. Mark Denney has figured out seven habits and characteristics of highly successful landscape photographers. He talks about them in the video below, so let’s see if you agree, and if you have these traits, too.
1. Overcoming obstacles
The first characteristic or habit is overcoming obstacles. In other words, successful landscape photographers adapt to every situation: the weather, time of the year, time of day… Landscape photographers try to time the shoot so the conditions are ideal, but they know that it’s rarely the case. So, they adapt and learn to make the best out of every situation.
2. A burning desire to improve
Another common trait of successful landscape photographers is a burning desire to improve. This doesn’t only mean improving the areas where they’re weak – but also their areas of strength. It’s important to appreciate what you already create, but also to be aware that there’s always room for improvement.
3. Master post processor
To be a “master post processor,” Mark notes that you don’t need to know everything about the image editing software you use. Instead, it means that you should have a unique editing style. It has to be subtle, yet recognizable, and it’s a delicate balance you have to work on to achieve.
When successful landscape photographers see something familiar, they observe it like it’s new. Mark has noticed their attention to detail while creating a composition even when they revisit the same location, and it’s curiosity that makes you search for new elements even in familiar places.
5. Keeping notes
There are plenty of ways a simple notebook can help you improve your photography. Mark has noticed that successful landscape photographers he knows always keep notes. They either carry a notebook or do it on their phones, but they all do it. I tend to write stuff down so I can totally relate. It helps you to organize your thoughts and time, keep all ideas and concepts in one place, or write reminders for the things you need to do.
Landscape photography isn’t just about visiting the location and taking photos. Those who are successful at it also perform quite a bit of preparation. It involves exploring maps and Google Earth, location scouting, checking the weather forecast… Some photographers go to the location when the conditions aren’t perfect just to get the feeling of the area, think about compositions, and write the ideas down. They take some test shots with their phone and write the notes, and then they return when the lighting is more favorable. This way it’s possible to use time much more efficiently once you arrive at the location for the actual shoot.
7. Practice, practice, practice
Just like in any other field, practice makes perfect. So, successful landscape photographers should never stop learning and shooting. If you want to become successful, shoot every day, practice, get to know your gear, and learn how to edit. Take photos even when the conditions are not great. After all, this way you’ll learn to adapt and use any weather conditions to your advantage.
Just like knowing about good habits and characteristics of landscape photographers, it’s also worth being aware of the bad ones. There are some bad habits that can prevent your career from growing, so pay attention to them as well. But as you develop good habits and try to kill the bad ones, it’s important to stay curious, creative, and happy.
[7 HABITS Of Highly SUCCESSFUL Landscape PHOTOGRAPHERS | Mark Denney]