”LEARN BY PICTURES” – Photographing Nature

Photo by Andy Vu: https://www.pexels.com/photo/brown-landscape-under-grey-sky-3244513/


I love this quote from one of my favorite websites:

Through photography, the beauty of Mother Nature can be frozen in time. This category celebrates the magic of our planet and beyond — from the immensity of the great outdoors, to miraculous moments in your own backyard.

When thinking of what kind of photography falls in the category of nature, here are a few ideas:
  • Wild animals
  • mountains
  • scenery
  • Weather
  • Macro
  • Rivers and streams
  • Ocean
  • Trees
  • And more I am sure!

Doing the “Learn by Pictures” program we have developed, these pictures are all so amazing, it inspires me to try my hand at nature. At the bottom of this blog today, I will post some of my own photos that show nature as I have captured it.

Let’s look at common mistakes made in Nature photography:


“Oh, is that a Buffalo out there in the field? I can’t quite tell”. So you have a camera and it takes great photos, or even your cell phone. Why take bad pictures? If you can barely see it, don’t take it! No one will like it. How do you get close enough to the subject:

closeup photo of bald eagle
Photo by Anthony : ) on Pexels.com

There’s only 2 ways to get close enough photos to make it look good. Either you walk up to the animal or plant, or flower and take the picture so that the subject fills the frame. If you are doing an animal, then you might just scare them away, and you won’t get a decent photo. So, that brings us to the next step: Get a bigger lens, in which you don’t have to get close to the subject. But you can use this lens to zoom right in to see the animal. You can go with one that is less expensive, or save up for the “BIG” lens. That’s how you get photos like the ones above.

2- Distracting Depth of field:

Good depth of field was not used very well on this photo. Although it isn’t too bad. But there is too much area in acceptable focus when if you want to get a good photo of a bird, or birds, do something more like this (F4 or 2.8 would be great):

Wynand van Poortvliet

Notice how nice the depth of field is in this photo. There are a few flowers in the background, but I think it adds to the photo.

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#3 – Getting too close to the subject:

This might be an issue mostly when doing macro photos. The depth of field is hard to get right sometimes with close-ups, and you have part of the subject out of focus. So watch, if you can, if everything is in focus.

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4- Bad Timing:

Animals move, they blink, they turn their heads, they flap their wings. Sometimes it seems they are on a mission to foil your best attempts at a good photo.

In every wildlife encounter, there are a thousand opportunities to take a bad photo and maybe one or two opportunities to take a good photo. A nature photographer learns to be ready for that perfect moment.

This is a matter of patience and perseverance. You need to spend as much time as possible with your subject and take a lot of photos. Expect most of them to be rubbish, but take delight in the good ones because they are hard to come by. In particular, watch the animal’s movements and behavior. The trick is to try to catch a moment that expresses something unique to set your photo apart from millions of others. You won’t get that perfect shot every time, but when you do it is a moment to treasure.

5- Poor lighting:

When you ask a professional photographer “when is the best time of day to take photos?”, they will tell you THE MIDDLE OF THE DAY IS THE WORST!

Really, and you thought because it’s nice and sunny then, it should be good? In the middle of the day the lighting is actually very harsh, doesn’t create shadows well, and it just doesn’t look it’s best either.

When do photographers take most of their photos? Early morning or Just before the sun goes down. Let’s see some examples:

Here is a great collection of photos taken either early

in the morning or late in the afternoon.

photo of trees at golden hour
Photo by Elias Tigiser on Pexels.com
Photo by Lanny Cottrell Photography
silhoutte of a man
Photo by Jeremy Bishop on Pexels.com



Here is a collection of great Nature photography. Some things to look for:

1- Lighting

1- Filling the frame

1- Something unusual

Now, as promised a small collection of my “nature” Photos:

33 Photos in today’s “LEARN BY PICTURES”

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