When I first started this adventure of photography I had to figure out what I should take pictures off. Frankly, I started off by just shooting my camera at anything that looked interesting or promising, and that’s not a bad way to start off. But after a while I started figuring out that I was drawn to certain categories of photography, many of which you can browse on my website here. But most importantly, there is one category that I found extremely educational and simple for even a complete beginner to start trying out immediately.
What is Urban Landscapes? It’s just capturing images or scenes within your local city or town, and although one could write an entire course of the topic, for the beginner I have listed three things to keep in mind to help create the best shots for your portfolio.
1. Have an end goal in mind
The great thing about Urban Landscape is the sheer room for improvisation. If you live in a city, just step outside your doorway and you have a potential picture! But even though the process of finding a location isn’t as complicated as say, rural landscapes, you still have to have an end-goal in mind. Have an idea beforehand of the type of shots you’re looking to take, and be sure to do your research and homework for the best locations in your city or neighborhood. Do you want to have street photos, urban art, or landscape city shots? What kind of feeling are you going for in your photos?
2. Keep Your Equipment On Hand
The beauty of urban landscapes is that inspiration can strike you at any time. You have no idea of how many beautiful moments I have missed because I left my camera and tripod at home! Keep your camera and some basic equipment in the trunk of your car, for example, so if you happen to be coming home from the grocery store and you see the potential for a really interesting shot, you have everything that you need to make it happen. It doesn’t need to take more than a couple of minutes out of your day.
The beauty of this approach is some of my most creative and inspiring pictures came from just seemingly random moments, just happening to pass by an interesting landmark or suburb sunset turns into an amazing shot because I was able to seize the moment.
3. Be Willing to Experiment
Creativity is king in photography. Experimenting with different setups, angles, lightings can have a drastic difference in the quality of your shot.
a) Pay Attention to the Location of the Sun – Experiment with the time of day you take your photos in. A morning photo will have a totally different quality then an evening shot.
b) Include People – It’s one thing to have a picture with no-one in it, but by including people in your shots you can convey a relationship, a story if you will, that can carry far more impact to your pictures then a picture without anyone in it.
c) Night Photography – Taking a picture in the middle of the night. Urban landscape takes a completely different tone, mood and quality when laminated only by the lights of the city.
Like I said, many experts have created entire courses on just this on topic, but it still remains a field that even the inexperienced of beginners can started with today and have some beautiful pictures for their portfolio in a short period of time.
Until next time,