The ups and downs of landscape photography

For those who follow my work, you know that I am primarily a landscape photographer. I love getting out into the wilds and taking photos. However, one of the primary lessons to learn is that YOU ARE NOT IN CONTROL. There are things that happen that you have no control over. From wind and rain to cloudy days to the scene not being what you expected.

So, what do you do in these situations?  You look for the best photograph you can make at the time.  This past week was a prime example of this. There was a full lunar eclipse that was slated for our part of the world and it was going to be at a fairly reasonable hour (ok, so for some, a 5 a.m. start time is not reasonable…).  As I have never gotten a good shot of the blood moon (google it), I was really excited for this and was off to a local park to take the photos.

The total eclipse was slated to start at 6:24 and last until almost 7:30.  As I was wanting to get the moon in it’s various phases I staked out my shots and got this first one at 5:58 am,



It is a very nice shot and you can see the red creeping across the frame of the moon.  However, by 6:04, you can start to see the problem that is heading in;




While an interesting photograph, you can start to see the haziness of clouds rolling in. It softens the image and makes it much harder to get an exposure for both the high lights and the shadows.  This is not going to end well!  The next shot was at 6:08;



And here you can really see that the coulds are starting to obscure the moon. While there is still some color, shortly after this the cloud cover got too great to take any photo.  I was greatly disappointed in this as I was really hoping for a nice shot of the moon over the local lake.

However, because I was already up early and looking for photographic subjects, I was able to capture this shot at 5:51 a.m.




It may not be the blood moon, but it is still a very nice shot.  One that I would not of gotten if I had decided to stay in bed.

So, the moral of the story is, if you want to take landscape photographs, you have to take what nature is going to give you. You cannot be disappointed because you didn’t capture your vision. You need to change your vision to capture what is there…



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