18 Jan
2014

Advantages of Landscape Photography Close to Home

Travel for photography is wonderful — but most of us can’t travel as much as we want. For many of us, time is alway something we struggle with. Therefore doing photography close to home is essential for me in order that I not lose my sense of composition and technique. Close to home doesn’t mean that you just stay in your backyard. What I’m referring to is a place you can easily reach for just one night or one morning. For me the limit of what is reasonable is a drive within an hour and a half from home. But, in that time I can reach a lot of different places.

The most important advantages of photography close to home are:

-You can come back later if the light is not cooperating
We all know the importance of light and many times we miss out on the best light. I feel that going to places near where I live puts less pressure on me to make great photos. If the light is not cooperating, I just enjoy myself instead and try to the best pictures I can during the circumstances. Sometimes I take the opportunity to test and learn new techniques.

 -You can easily follow the season.
It’s really exciting to follow the season and try to make images  at the same place during different seasons. This often yields a great variety of pictures that could even be taken at the the exact same spot but still look different.

-You learn about the place and where to go in different light.
For me it’s essential to know my subject and being able to visit a place at different seasons is a great way to quickly learn about how the area changes during different seasons and under different types of light. Visiting the same area on a overcast day in winter won’t be the same as being there during a wonderful sunset in spring.

-You can constantly train your sense of composition.
This is the most important point. If you get out more, you will get better. Photography is not different from sports in that sense. If you train a lot you get better, and by having places near home to go to, training gets easier.

I have taken all the pictures below within an hour from where I live. I just love to be able to look at the light and get out if it’s good. And if it’s raining I just stay at home, working in the office.

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Sunrise over the sea – Brösarps backar
Nikon D800E, 70-300mm @70mm, f11, 1/100 sec, ISO 100

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Spring in the gorge – Söderåsens National Park
Nikon D800E, 85mm PC-E (tree image stitch) f8, ¼ sec, ISO 100

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Late spring in tje woods – Maltesholm
Nikon D800E, 24-70mm @35mm, f13, 0,6 sec, ISO 400

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Crashing wave – Kullaberg
Nikon D800E, 14-24mm @18mm, f11, ⅓ sec, ISO 200

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Last light – Kullaberg
Nikon D800E, 14-24mm @24mm, f11, 1,6 sec, ISO 100

 

About Patrik Larsson (16 Posts)

I am a photographer with a passion for landscapes, from small carefully selected cross-sections to large views. To inspire others with what I love is the best life for me. Previously I worked as a teacher in photography and outdoor activities for some years. Today I work as a freelance photographer and workshop leader. I give courses and lectures for schools, companies and associations.


11 Comments

  • […] Photography News: Advantages of Landscape Photography Close to Home Travel for photography is wonderful — but most of us can’t travel as much as we want. For many of us, time is alway something we struggle with. Therefore doing photography close to home is essential for me in order that I not lose my sense of composition and technique. Close to home doesn’t mean that you just stay in your backyard. What I’m referring to is a place you can easily reach for just one night or one morning. For me the limit of what is reasonable, is a drive within an hour and a half from home. But, in that time I can reach a lot of different places. Read full story => Ianplant […]

  • Patrik,

    Beautiful images as is your norm! Your comments are so very true. Living in Colorado Springs I have several “go-to” places that I can access in 10-30 minutes and many more within a 1 hour drive of my home. My favorite is Garden of the Gods, a 12 minute drive away, where I can find fantastic rock formations and views of Pikes Peak any time or season. However, those who do not live in areas such as yours and mine should not despair for there are ample places, even in big cities, to find interesting photo subjects. When I travel to Columbus, Ohio to visit family, I have discovered several ravines, woods, brooks, rivers and waterfalls – all within city limits – that allow great opportunities. One just needs to look, they are everywhere!

    • It´s true that you can find places to photograph even in places that on first sight doesn’t look that good. You just have to work a bit harder. And hard work often the key to new an fascinating pictures.
      Thanks for your comment, really appreciate it!

  • Patrik,

    As always, this is a great article and photos from you.

    When I started out a few years ago, I thought that photography would only be something I did when traveling to beautiful locations like the Sierra Nevada and Rocky Mountains, because my home state, Florida, isn’t so interesting in comparison. Crazy, isn’t it? People all over the world dream of vacationing and living in Florida, but to a native like me it was a dull, flat place (relatively speaking, of course…I always knew that Florida had its moments).

    In addition to what you’ve written about constant practice making one better, two other things have turned my perspective completely around. One was happening across a book by Florida nature photographer John Moran, who has been called the “photographer laureate” of Florida. His work really inspired me and opened my eyes to the possibilities of photography in this state. Many of his great photos were of places within an hour’s drive of my house! What a revelation. :)

    The other thing was reading the words of another photographer who wrote that people like me, who dreamt of exotic locations with canyons, waterfalls, and mountains, need to start seeing the world as lines, forms, shapes, and colors. In this way a cloud formation on the horizon of a flat marshland can become a mountain range.

    Now I love shooting around my home territory and am slowly becoming better at recognizing weather and seasonal patterns, and knowing when certain areas are hit by the best light of the day. These were things I never noticed before taking up this craft. I feel like photography is a gift that opens our eyes to the beauty around us that we never perceived before.

    • Thanks Blake!
      I´m glad you like my article.
      You really do live in a fascinating landscape. I would love to go to florida some day. But as you mention it´s really easy to be blind to the motifs in your backyard. The grass is always greener….
      I´m glad you find inspiration shooting around where you live.

  • I love this! I shoot A LOT near home and I stay even closer since I don’t own a vehicle! Regardless, shooting often and trying new techniques have allowed me to learn at a faster pace IMO. Plus, walking with a camera is just fun:) EE

    • Thanks Eric!
      It´s so true that when you shoot a lot you get better faster. Training is the only way to bee better. And if you train a lot you get better faster. One should not relay on talent, it´s all about hard work.
      But if you love it´s not work it´s a pleasure. :)

      Keep on shooting!

  • […] The most important advantages of photography close to home are: MORE… […]

  • Patrik,
    This is fantastic advice and something I have been struggling with lately. I appreciate your advice! I actually used your advice yesterday, traveling 30 minutes to a familiar spot and was able to practice composition. Now, the lighting was poor and I won’t keep any of the photos, however, I did not feel any pressure or disappointment since I can go back frequently!

    • David, reading your comment makes me really happy. I want people to go out and explore the surroundings and enjoy what´s in the “backyard” as a compliment to longer travels.

      Happy shooting!