A photographer needs to know about the composition to shoot perfect landscape photos. In landscape photo shooting, you will be unable to catch the viewer’s attention without proper composition.
Advanced landscape photography composition is a way to arrange the visual elements in a photo around the subject. It helps to make your image more pretty. Also, It helps to impress the viewers as well.
There are a lot of methods that you can do to take great landscape shots. But all of them can’t bring the perfect result. In this article, I will share 13 useful tips to apply in landscape composition to shoot a great image.
Table of Contents
- 1 Advanced landscape photography composition
- 2 Tips for Overcoming Composition Challenges
- 2.1 1. Try Possible Compositions before Fix your tripod
- 2.2 2. Rank Your Foreground, Midground & Background with the level of interest
- 2.3 3. Apply Block Method Composition
- 2.4 4. Assume you are a Painter
- 2.5 5. Learn How Focal Length & the distance from your subject impacts it’s the size in a photograph
- 2.6 6. Try Composition to Frame your portrait’s Focal Point
- 2.7 7. Binding the Golden Triangles
- 2.8 8. Discover Patterns & Bring Technique to Break Them
- 2.9 9. Discover Ideas to Apply Scale
- 2.10 10. Take a Few Slices of Layer Cake
- 2.11 11. Discover Natural Symmetry
- 2.12 12. Color Theory
- 2.13 13. Use Leading Lines
- 3 Frequently Asked Questions
- 4 Final Thoughts
Advanced landscape photography composition
Let’s go over everything you need to know about landscape photo shooting composition.
What Is Composition?
As a photo shooter, you must have a clear idea of what composition means. Photo composition helps the shooters to show the message with proper emotions. It makes your shots more real and charming.
So, the composition is a way to arrange the elements in a photo to make it more artistic. In some sessions, the shooter omits some extra objects to help the subject get more focus.
In other words, it is a way to grab the viewer’s attention. The shooter selects the subject & then adds or re-arrange the other things & positions them in the right order to bring attention to the subject. That is called photo composition in short. It helps to present the subjects in a more real way.
An easy example of composition can be landscape photos.
For instance, say you are shooting the sunset scene. And there the frame includes a tree, etc. to distract the subject. You need to apply composition by placing the objects in the right order & bring a perfect position & angle to focus the sunset.
You can also change your position to create the right shot. Do some experiments until you find a good position within the photo frame.
The motive of composition is to direct the viewer’s eye to a single subject. A good composition can help you to get rid of ugly objects.
Excellent compositions have some rules & strategies. If you follow this article, you can derive some great shots.
Yet, the wrong composition can ruin your landscape photos. Even often, it is so hard to fix in the post process as well. So give some time to visualize the perfect shot.
I will share some great tips to help you get the target shots. It doesn’t matter whether you are a beginner or pro; these fine composition tips will help you so much to enhance your skills.
Why is Photo Composition Challenging?
Guess that you are standing in a landscape scene. Here you need to focus the viewer’s depth of feeling with a sweet view. You can observe the intense beauty with open eyes. But it is hard to present the dynamic depth of beauty in a static photo.
Only showing some exposure is not enough to capture the story of a scene. You need to present the story of the scene in such a way that attracts the viewers.
The challenge of composition is to give your audience the story of the scene. You should feel your viewers like they were present on the spot. This type of composition can give the best shots.
There are various tips to perfect this skill. But it is hard to arrange the things to present the story. The main thing you need to do is to connect the tips with the scenery. Only by learning rules & tips can’t help you get better at it.
You need to apply it to different places. If you don’t, you won’t be able to focus on emotions & behind stories to make it appear well. Yet a perfect composition needs a creative mind. So, non-creative and linear people find it harder.
Mixing your creativity & logic needs some effort & hard work. You can win the pro composition challenge if you invest time & labor. You should have a strong visual power to shoot a piece of a great photo.
Tips for Overcoming Composition Challenges
You can practice different ways to improve your composition skills.
Discover your photography strength
Find out your strength in photography. In general, how you sort out any problem. It helps you to be more creative & problem solver. Identify your positive strength to improve your skills way faster.
Research Other Composition
Find out some popular shooters to follow. Try to find out the concepts. Relate it to the subjects.
Also, try to figure out what types of styles and rules he usages. This type of research helps you to enrich your skills by a lot.
While you are going to capture any scene, you can imagine better compositions with ease.
Imagine your composition
It is vital to imagine the composition before the final clicks. It helps to fix any issue that can ruin the whole thing.
Imagination helps to develop all your shots. You can identify the nicest scene with a good imagination. You should give some time to create a better composition.
Omit Distract Objects
While you are picking the right spot, you must omit distracting objects as well. Experiment with open eyes, list out what types of objects will fit in this that you can use to distract the viewers from the subjects.
Then find the correct position to omit out the distracting objects.
The main thing is to try again and again and do more research. You should apply the tips as much as you can and try to feel the difference. These tips will help you to win over the composition challenges.
1. Try Possible Compositions before Fix your tripod
When you are reaching the shooting spot, try to visualize what will be the best way to shoot with the eye. Guess what this type of open eye survey helps to derive lots of vital things.
After doing the survey, take your DSLR to your eye, move it around the location, zoom in & out. Try different angles & focal length to find the best scene.
Don’t set your tripod too early. Do some surveys with your camera. Move freely with your camera to find perfect scenery with attractive subjects & elements.
After finding the right angle or scenery, fix your tripod. Now start to find better compositions with good lighting. It’s better to give some time to explore different views.
After finding any good shot don’t stop your session. Who knows something more potential great shots can be waiting for you. So it’s better to look for something more with your camera.
2. Rank Your Foreground, Midground & Background with the level of interest
After reaching a new photo session location, you intend to focus on the appealing things. You have three major zones in your image. That is foreground, midground & background.
Based on the scenery, the zones can be modified. We can visualize that the foreground zone is the closest to the camera. The faraway zone from your camera is background & between the midground is located.
After surveying if you find the midground is more appealing in session then fix tripod height at a low level. You can fix camera angles to focus its details.
In case the background or midground in your frame makes the foreground distracting, you should set your camera higher from the ground. It will fix your issues.
As a result, you can find the composition part that needs the highest attention. So you can fix your standing point & positioning style to capture your target scene with the composition skills as well.
3. Apply Block Method Composition
You can find some annoying details in the scene. Taking off those annoying details & removing them is called block method composition.
When you try the block method, you should try to refine out the details with nice objects or beautiful shape.
Choose the shapes that can create dominating scenery.
The motive of the block method is to discover the hidden dominating shapes behind rivers, mountains, etc by omitting the pesky details.
Choose the stone that constructs our dominating photos. And then try to find an angle to combine those shapes to make an impressive image.
4. Assume you are a Painter
In the tips of shooting great landscapes, you can bring a positive and a great effect with a simple trick. A painter makes a scene with a brush. They apply brushes until it looks fit.
The scene may be the imagination of the painter. Or from the outdoor view but the painter himself selects the objects by omitting pesky details. Yet, he adds some new elements from different scenes to make the photo carry more meaning.
You can also follow the painter’s rules. Find the distracting elements from your scene & create the compositions with vital stuff. You can include or exclude elements to make your image great.
5. Learn How Focal Length & the distance from your subject impacts it’s the size in a photograph
It is not wise to always shoot images. Give some time to learn some vital shots. The dominant shot with detailed foreground can give the viewer a feeling that their face is stick through the photo. It brings a vibe that the viewers were present on the scene.
It is tough to fix dominating photos with the foreground. But it gives some amazing results. To get this kind of great photos, you need to learn how various focal lengths harm the visual size of the background & foreground.
That’s for a 15 mm wide-angle lens that can convert a small foreground into a bigger one & some biggest elements can look tiny. Yet, a 70 -210 mm lens can convert remote objects to seem closer in the foreground & midground.
6. Try Composition to Frame your portrait’s Focal Point
There are different specific ways to push a frame into your photos. While you are shooting inside the car’s window & keeping the window frame including the exterior portions of your image.
Composition framing can be a very mysterious thing. In the outdoor session, test your photo to visualize the light transition & different color transition effects or hard lines. These types of composition are applied to capture the specific portions of a photo.
7. Binding the Golden Triangles
In the golden triangle composition, you will apply diagonals in your image. It brings a dynamic vibe in your photograph.
In the case of the golden triangle, you put vital things in a frame on the lines. These lines are made using nine equal sizes triangles throughout the frame. In the output, you will derive diagonals in the whole picture.
Visualize your frame & illustrate a diagonal line from the left side & slowly bring it down to the right corner. You can also use the left corner. The main aim is to derive diagonal lines.
Now illustrate another line up to the diagonal line. So that it intersects at right angles. Repeat the task with another line to intersect the mainline at the right angles.
Now you are done with triangles that build a golden composition.
Capture portrait photo for golden triangle composition
After fixing the grid, you will find two intersection points. By the golden rules, your motive to push your point of attention over the intersection point.
Point of attention
It is the main static subject of your photograph. In advanced landscape photography, the eye should quiet on this point. The subjects should be on the intersection portions to hold the audience’s eyes.
The subject has essential leadline lines. These lines make the golden triangle composition.
So, look for the diagonal line which leads to the main subject. In advance landscape photography composition it can be a boat that makes the main subject river more interesting.
8. Discover Patterns & Bring Technique to Break Them
Most of our apparel, fabrics, architecture have different patterns. It is all about soothing your eyes. Repeated color creates patterns that delighted the eye.
When we apply patterns in landscape composition, It brings an opportunity to separate the focal point in your photo.
While you are breaking the pattern, it grabs the viewer’s attention towards the subject in the photo. That brings a standout landscape photo.
Pattern form of various colors or textures. In some cases, it can be a geometric form. When you survey a location, you should look departed leading lines & check patterns.
9. Discover Ideas to Apply Scale
In photo compositions, sometimes we use a tiny wide-angle lens. It makes it hard to get the actual size of the scene or the things you cover.
The easy idea is to apply a scale you can set a person in your image. That can convert a large scale of objects into vivid images for everyone.
Here humans work for scaling because in general, the height of humans goes 5-6 feet. So this assumption of size helps the viewers to scale the other objects. This trick helps to benefit your composition.
10. Take a Few Slices of Layer Cake
To create a cool two-dimensional landscape photo layering is a vital tool. The cake is delicious food that uses layering. So this tip is also called a layer cake composition technique.
You can discover layers in natural beauty. Guess what mountains also have some eye-catchy layers. Lighting is another vital factor which vividly shapes & makes it more meaningful.
11. Discover Natural Symmetry
Strong natural symmetry elements can make your each shot perfect & attractive.
It is very hard to find natural symmetry. It also makes your landscape shots easier. So, if you want to get better shots with your camera, you must discover the natural symmetry of the picture.
In complex symmetry such as reflection, compositions you need to have dedication.
12. Color Theory
In photo shooting a great photo light, shapes & color all are vital. To create an eye-catchy image, color is a must. After intense analysis, I discover that some of the colors can improve your landscape photos by a lot.
In a color wheel, some colors are located in opposite positions such as blue & orange, red & green. This type of opposition color pair helps to create some beautiful results.
We can also divide the color wheel into different groups. We can apply red, green & blue to that very derived and nice image. This technique is related to the Block method that we just covered. Perfect color matching helps to improve your photo quality.
13. Use Leading Lines
In landscape photo shooting tips, push a leading line to attract the viewer’s attention to the subject.
When you draw a line, it is natural that your eyes focus on it. This line leads the audience to the subject.
In composition, there are some useful tips to make a perfect leading line. It takes some time and effort to get it right.
Types of Leading Lines
To shoot a great photo, you can try different leading lines to present various moods & emotions to the audience. You can make real scenery if you have a sharp eye.
Horizontal Leading Lines
Horizontal leading lines apply to highlight peace & calmness. In the case of natural beauty & cool shots, you can try horizontal lines. A horizontal line with accurate lighting can bring some great photos.
Vertical Leading Lines
It represents power, energy & ability. If you want to make your landscape composition strong & powerful, then vertical leading lines are a lucrative choice. E-commerce photographers usages this line to emphasize the subject.
Diagonal Leading Line
In your landscape photo, you can include motion, direction, or changing phase with a diagonal leading line. Diagonal lines are illustrated from left to right. So you should position your subject at the beginning point or end to the line to highlight the best effects.
It can also influence visual impacts as well.
When you apply a diagonal line from left to right, it adds pure calmness. But, upward-sloping lines represent torture.
Converging Leading Lines
If you want to highlight a subject, then converging leading lines is the best. It is natural human eyes attract on the point where two lines meet.
So, when you find two converging leading lines in your location, It will be a great opportunity to capture landscape composition. It will make your subject focusing & vivid.
Leading lines landscape composition tips
If you follow some strategy to apply leading lines in landscape photos, then you will be able to get some of the best shots. Follow the below tips.
- Apply leading lines in a way to create visual direction.
- When you use cover lines try to apply the inverse direction. Position your subject on the point where two lines meet. It will catch the audience’s eye to the subject. Converging lines are the best to make your landscape composition stand out.
- Practice the same shots with various heights level. Examine with leading lines how it comes at various levels. It helps you find out the most attractive position.
- Lighting is the key to bring focus. So, play with lighting to bring shadow & experiment it on different interesting points. You must derive some of the best photos that you can get
Frequently Asked Questions
1. How can I improve my landscape photo composition?
To improve your landscape photo composition, follow the above 13 tips. Then apply this tip while you are capturing landscape images. Do some research on other shooters as well. It will improve your composition skill.
2. What is photo composition?
Photo composition is a technique to arrange elements to make your subject focus even more.
3. What are the golden triangle rules?
Putting nice elements in a frame on the lines is the first rule of the golden triangle.
These lines are formed using nine equal-size triangles throughout your frame. So you will get diagonals.
4. How do you create depth in landscape photography?
A perfect composition helps to create depth landscape photos. You will be able to present the story of a scene using it
So, what are the popular rules in landscape photo composition?
- Discover Natural symmetry
- Use Leading Lines
- Binding the golden triangles
- Block Method Composition
- Possible Composition survey
- Ideas to apply scale
- Color Theory
5. Why is composition important?
It helps to attract the audience. You can’t relate the emotions behind a scene without it. To make your landscape photo pretty, you must focus on composition. Without it, you can’t shoot good photos.
6. What makes a great landscape photo?
A perfect composition can make a great landscape photo. It will help to direct the viewer’s attention to the subject. It helps to make your photo great by bringing appeal, emotions & focus.
Also, It will discard distracting elements from your photo. So, you will make a great photo using it.
If you capture your landscape photos without composition, then it may lack beauty. It helps to bring attraction & helps you to shoot some of the best shots.
I guess you already tried some of the tips. Now it’s time to add some new ideas & tips to improve your photo shooting skill. You should decide what tips you are going to use depending on the scenery. It depends on the demands that you get for the image.
These top 13 advanced landscape photo shooting tips will help you to reach another level in a very short period.