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on Nov 8, 2017 in Landscape Photography

Before You Go Click

Bandon Beach
captured by D850 / 18-35AFS

“What lens should I use?” “What exposure comp should I use?” “Where should I put the horizon line?” Where should I put the sun?” These and many more are all essential questions you MUST ask yourself before you take your photo because you can’t “fix” them in post no matter what file format you use. What’s the guide you should be using in answering these and more questions about your photograph? It’s the light, the light is what makes or breaks your photograph and moves the eye through the frame! While the answer might be just one word, light, it’s a helluva a word that has all the complications and power challenging our photography. Here’s an example that might aid you in the future.

There are a lot of elements going on in this photo. The first thing you might notice is the sun, the subject, is dead center. Oh no … I broke that rule so many say you can’t do! Guess what, centered is our strongest composition, when, when all the elements in the frame support it. In this case, the light all brings the eye down to the center of the frame, from the top and the bottom. But the bottom had to be brought to life in post (see before image below). Even though the D850 has great dynamic range, it still has a limit (this is a 8stop photo) but knowing that about your camera it’s a snap to overcome. I simply used Luminar 2018, my own ProcontactSplit preset which with one click, produced what you see. But knowing all the tools in play, from camera to post, are essential when you organize your elements in the frame and go click. I feel it’s essential to know all of this when you make that photo because when you do, you’re using light to move the eye through the frame and therefore, telling your story. Interested in learning more about this, perhaps intrigued and confused at the same time? Well, I just so happen to have a KelbyOne Class on this very topic which goes through it all much deeply. You need to have this in your head and heart before you go click.