30 Jan Seasons Sharp Photography Tips 2021
The rich, deep colors of autumn look great in photos, even if you are shooting in the city, rather than in nature. City lights, architecture and people add a new dimension to autumn nature photography. Here are 10 tips for capturing the orange, reds and golds of the season against the grays of our favorite concrete jungle. Whichever camera you use, we hope you get enough inspiration to go out and try to capture the best this vibrant time of year has to offer.
Shooting contrasting colors
Contrasting colors in a single image make the picture more impressive, so try capturing several different hues in the same frame. Take a stroll through the city parks in the city center or walk the tree-lined streets on the outskirts of the city to capture the bright kaleidoscope of red and yellow tree leaves against dark buildings or clear blue skies. But don’t let the beauty of autumn let you forget about your subject and composition. Experiment with combining architecture, people, cityscapes, and autumn colors to tell your story and grab viewers’ interest.
Capture the autumn mood
Autumn weather is changeable and allows you to capture many different moods of the city in one day. The sky can be bright and clear at first, and after a minute it will be covered with clouds and it will become dark and gloomy. Take advantage of these changes to create a variety of shots. Try shooting the shadows of trees and buildings on a bright, windy day, or find a bridge and capture dark autumn clouds hanging over a city river. When shooting with slow shutter speeds (if supported by the camera), using a tripod will help prevent blur and better capture the autumnal atmosphere.
Take advantage of autumn light
The ideal time to capture autumn cityscapes is the “magic” or “golden” hour. Typically, this includes the first half hour just after dawn in the morning and half an hour just before sunset at the end of the day – plan ahead for the shoot. Autumn sunlight at this time allows for better texture and shape, which is ideal for close-up shots, for example, of fallen leaves against the pavement in the transparent rays of sunlight. The foggy light of the early morning is a great opportunity to create expressive pictures, for example, of empty city streets.
Fog over a river, such as the Thames or the Seine, can look very atmospheric, but can be difficult to photograph. If your camera has the ability to adjust the exposure, try using a tripod and slow shutter speeds, as less light gets into the camera on foggy days.
Shooting autumn details
Autumn street food, leafy sidewalks, Halloween – these are great opportunities for autumn photography in the city. If your camera has a zoom function, use it to draw attention to detail: an orange pumpkin head, rich reds in autumn leaves, or seasonal fruit at a farm market. You can, for example, place a single large leaf in front of the frame with a busy street in the background.
Macro photography is a great way to explore autumn colors and textures from unique perspectives. Experiment with the on-camera macro and close-up modes and look for interesting details – raindrops on curled leaves or paths of fallen leaves on city sidewalks.
Try using filters
When capturing the changing seasons in a city, filters can help change the look of your photos. In the case of DSLR photography, using a mechanical polarizing filter with your preferred lens will enhance colors, add more depth to blues in the sky, and dramatically change the look of your photos. This effect can be difficult to achieve with applications or software. When shooting with a compact camera, experiment with a variety of creative filters or scene settings. This will help soften bright sunlight and increase the contrast and color saturation in images.
Take a look up or down
Taking pictures of the city to show its autumnal charm is fun and exciting. Helpful hint – look up to see what’s happening above you. Taking pictures from this angle allows the viewer to appreciate the autumn colors of the city from an unexpected angle. Almost bare branches against the sky convey the feeling of autumn and allow the viewer to appreciate the beauty and fragility of nature in comparison with the massive buildings or urban structures on the horizon. Have you looked up? Now try looking down. Take a photo of your shoes as you stand on rustling autumn leaves, or put your camera on the ground and use the self-timer for a low-angle fall self-portrait.
Embark on an autumn urban adventure
If you are lacking inspiration, try wandering around town for a few hours on an autumn day looking for opportunities to create an interesting shot. Find quiet places away from the walking trails and crowds where you can enjoy the beauty of the cityscape. Do you remember a specific place that you visited in spring or summer? Try going back there to capture how it changes from season to season. A great time to walk around the city – in the late afternoon – the sky looks most picturesque between 15 and 17 hours, and the sun is already leaning towards the horizon. Head towards the river or town square in search of autumn cityscapes with dramatic shadows and silhouettes. Pay attention to interesting combinations and empty spaces that let fall colors fill your frame. Think about
Photograph trees, rivers and leaves
Autumn is that rare time of the year when even an ordinary tree can be an interesting subject for photography. There is something magical about the vibrant colors of the leaves of the tree that replace each other. Why not come to this same tree a few days later and take a series of images reflecting its incredible color metamorphosis? They can then be printed and hung on the wall as a beautiful fall photo collage. Reflections of the colors of an autumn city in a river or lake can also look impressive.
In autumn, the look of city streets changes rapidly when the sun disappears over the horizon and the evening lights turn on. What seems dull during the day can quickly turn into a stunning scene when it gets dark, allowing you to create a wonderful night shot with a special mood and atmosphere. Try shooting at dusk, when it’s not yet completely dark, but the streetlights are on. Place your camera on a tripod or hard, level surface and experiment with slow shutter speeds. Try capturing the light trails of passing cars or trees illuminated by bright lanterns against the starry sky. Autumn light is unique, so take advantage of it before winter replaces autumn and the days get even shorter.
Put your camera aside
While exploring the city’s autumn beauty, don’t forget to stop, put your camera aside and enjoy the magic, charm, and beauty of autumn. But don’t stay too long! Autumn lasts only a few weeks, and the period of the brightest autumn colors and the best photo opportunities is even less – just a few days. Do not miss your chance! The last week of October and the first week of November are usually considered the brightest and most colorful. Stay tuned for developments in the nearby park, and be sure to check the weather forecast before embarking on this fun photography adventure.