For many of us here in the northern hemisphere, we are happy to welcome the summer. The many hard winter months and the cold winter is gone, and now the beauty of summer has arrived. Officially the summer solstice begins this week June 21st. So, in the spirit of getting everyone out of the house and enjoying the great outdoors and taking a lot of pictures, here are a few tips that are appropriate for the summer months:
Time to get the hibernation feeling off, and get yourself out the door. The spring flowers and the foliage is in full swing now. In fact, you could walk around the neighborhood, and notice, that probably spring isn’t really noticeable anymore. The flowers are all in full bloom now, the grass is being mowed (for those who have grass to mow) and the birds are all feeding their young and working to get them into flight. You should be able to be see that summer is really here now.
Here is the US we have to accept a time change and lose an extra hour of sleep. Once we get used to that, we are ready for something incredible. More hours of sunlight in which to photograph things. The time to get out and take great sunset photos, or find the “golden hour” pictures.
When you get off work, even, you have time to grab your camera and head to somewhere out of the city, to grab photos of the wild, the prarie, the desert, the shoreline, wherever you live, there should be plenty of time now to just take great photos. The summer day officially marks the longest daylight of the year. More time to get photos. Where I live, the sunset is after 9pm. The golden hour is after 8pm. It is amazing how much time you have to drive somewhere to get a new perspective of sunsets and the golden hour somewhere new.
With your surroundings, take a look at the way patterns play a part in your surroundings. This can be done with plants, and trees. This is the right time of year to look for things like that.
Light can play a big part in finding some of those patterns. Things you might see out in the forest may create certain patterns and textures.
These above photos are examples of some of the patterns and textures you can find in the summer. You could find them in other seasons, but, summer the colors seem more vibrant. Breaking up the patterns, like the one photo above, is very artistic.
The quality of light changes from each season. From winter to spring, and then from spring to summer. Summer light is so direct and the light and shadows are much more dynamic. So, look for those kind of things that can show of the dynamics of light and shadows.
The best time to catch the best shadows, of course is in the early morning or late afternoon. I have mentioned in my blogs before, that you have to train your eyes to look for these contrasty situations. Our eyes are not trained to see it naturally. We have to seriously look for contrast. It is not a natural thing to see contrast. But, once you learn to look for it, your photos will be spectacular.
You need to add color, and flowers to your portfolio. Learn how to do close-ups of flowers. Learn how to do it right. Learn the do’s and don’ts of flower photography. They can make such a difference in your skills. I think it will “UP” your skills in photography, because it’s not just a simple point and shoot.
Make sure the lighting is on the flower, and possiby figure out how to use you depth of field so that the flower is the only thing in focus. It takes practice, but, so worth it to get a good flower photo.
Some of the best photos you will ever take happen during the bad weather. Some of the best photos you ever take happen just after the bad weather too! During the summer, the weather is really harsh weather. In North America, the rain storms are not usually gentle rain storms, but, thunder and lightning storms, big winds, and even sever storms in the midwest like tornados and such. If you are off the coastal lands, you may have to worry about hurricanes, typhoons, and those kind of severe storms. Summer brings out the worst in weather. Have you ever thought about having your camera with you during those kind of storms? How about at least a weatherproof type camera:
A camera similar to this ought to be something to think about during the summer as well. One that takes great photos, in the rain, is weatherproof, dustproof, shockproof, etc. Imagine if you were the only one that was able to get some of the amazing photos of say a hurricane, or a tornado, or earthquake, because you had this kind of camera with you. Can you imagine how much some of those photos would sell for?
Be aware of the weather conditions where ever you go during the summer. Be prepared to protect yourself, and be prepared to take photos of the weather. Also, don’t forget to take pictures after the weather. The photos after a good rain storm is amazing. The air, the lighting is very amazing after the rain:
I hope these photos, along with these tips have given you the excitement of taking photos during the summer. It would be great to see what new photos you take this summer. It’s all part of “practice, practice, practice”.