Tag Archives: landscapes

Landscapes with Longer Focal Lengths

Daybreak in the Rockies, Cottonwood Pass, Colorado. Image captured with a Nikon D800e and 70-200mm f/2.8 AFS G VRII zoom Nikkor lens.
Daybreak in the Rockies, Cottonwood Pass, Colorado. Image captured with a Nikon D800e and 70-200mm f/2.8 AFS G VRII zoom Nikkor lens.

When you go out to photograph landscapes, what’s the first lens you reach for? For many of us, it’s a midrange (24-70mm) or wide (16-35mm) zoom lens. Those lenses are great, but there are lots of times when a longer focal length is ideal, even in wide-open spaces. By using something like a 70-200mm zoom, you can make some really compelling images.

Why should you use a telephoto zoom for landscape photography?

  • Telephoto lenses help you isolate the subject and cut out distracting elements from the scene, especially empty foreground space.
  • Telephoto lenses create subject isolation by softening backgrounds, especially when used with wide apertures.
  • Telephoto lenses compress the scene, enhancing the look of layers in a landscape and adding depth.

With all these creative benefits, it’s no wonder that my 70-200mm lens is something I find very enjoyable to use on my landscape photography trips.

Here are some more landscape images I captured with my 70-200mm lens: Continue reading Landscapes with Longer Focal Lengths

Follow Jason Odell Photography

Using Glamour Glow on Skies and Clouds

I used the Glamour Glow filter on the sky (right) to tone down the harsh look of the clouds in this HDR image.
I used the Glamour Glow filter on the sky (right) to tone down the harsh look of the clouds in this HDR image (click to enlarge).

Of the 55 filters in Color Efex Pro 4, one of the most versatile is “Glamour Glow.” This filter creates a softening effect with a mild glow that is most often used in portraits. However, I’ve found it to be a perfect choice for smoothing out skies in HDR images and landscapes. To get this effect, you’ll want to add the Glamour Glow filter in Color Efex Pro 4 and dial up the saturation slider a bit. Then, use Control Points to restrict the effect to just the sky. You may need to use a combination of plus (+) and minus (-) Control Points to get the look just right.

Here’s a video tutorial of how I use Glamour Glow on HDR/Landscape images:

[youtube_sc url=”http://youtu.be/2sGj97ZztI0″ title=”Color%20Efex%20Pro%204%20Glamour%20Glow%20effect%20on%20skies%20and%20clouds” autohide=”1″ fs=”1″]

Master all 55 Color Efex Pro filters with the complete guide from Jason Odell
The Photographer’s Guide to Color Efex Pro 4.

Follow Jason Odell Photography

Photo of the Day: Look to the East (with free Color Efex Pro Preset)

Sunrise at Conata Basin, Badlands National Park, SD.  HDR image captured with a Nikon D800e and processed with the Nik Collection.
Sunrise at Conata Basin, Badlands National Park, SD. HDR image captured with a Nikon D800e and processed with the Nik Collection.

This is a sunrise image from my recent trip to the South Dakota Badlands. It’s a typical scenario at sunrise: pretty clouds and a back-lit foreground. I captured a standard ±2EV bracketed exposure series with the Nikon D800e (5-shots), and then processed the image in the Nik Collection (discount here). Continue reading Photo of the Day: Look to the East (with free Color Efex Pro Preset)

Follow Jason Odell Photography

Photo of the Day: Badlands Twilight

Last light in Badlands National Park, South Dakota. Nikon D800e with 70-200mm f/2.8 AFS G VRII Nikkor zoom. 1/8s @f/11, ISO 400
Last light in Badlands National Park, South Dakota. Nikon D800e with 70-200mm f/2.8 AFS G VRII Nikkor zoom. 1/8s @f/11, ISO 400 (click to enlarge).

When you shoot landscapes, keep in mind that sometimes the best light happens after the sun has already set. This image was captured about 2 minutes after sunset in Badlands National Park during my photo safari with Deborah Sandidge. High winds made a tripod mandatory, and I used mirror lock-up to prevent softness from mirror-slap. Although the original file wasn’t quite as spectacular, a quick trip to Color Efex Pro 4 brought this image to life.

Save 15% off the Nik Collection!
nik_collection_banner

Follow Jason Odell Photography

Nikon D4: Field testing and other notes

Nikon D4 image, under-exposed at -2.7EV compensation (click to enlarge)
Under-exposed Nikon D4 image after processing (click to enlarge)

My Moab photo safari last week was the first real field test of my new Nikon D4. I had absolutely no issues with it in the field, and I captured over 1500 frames (NEF). Some testing requires extended use, and with that, here are some more observations about the Nikon D4. Continue reading Nikon D4: Field testing and other notes

Follow Jason Odell Photography