My account has mainly landscape pictures – and all follow the same pattern.
Occasionally, one doesn’t see the forest for the trees – so here are a few tips of mine to make things easier:
Rule 1: Horizon in the picture or 50/50 division
As you can see here, I always have the horizon in the middle of the picture. This balances things out and does away with the necessity of extensive final editing.
The picture has a calm and proportional feel to it. The eye often experiences things as disturbing if they are proportionally too big or too small. Just as with faces, there are therefore also proportions in a picture which make it more attractive.
Landscape motives will always let you find the horizon which helps you to divide the picture into two parts.
No matter what it is, a pool, the sky, the beach – you will find that the picture has a different effect.
Rule 2: Natural frame or frame the picture.
This means that you look around for something that you can use as a frame for your picture. Just like for printed pictures, it can look nicer if you add a little accessory to a simple motive.
Here I simply added these fantastic palm fronds as a natural frame and have also paid attention to the horizon rule. By now my eye has adjusted to my rules and I automatically take photos of these sort of motives in this style.
You don’t always have to frame the whole picture. Sometimes a section is enough to make the picture look more interesting.
You will always find something in nature; it is also fun to add a virtual frame to photos. You can play with the depth of field and sharpen the fronds or palms while letting the background seem a bit blurry.
Rule 3: Place objects correctly and always pay attention to their size.
When you want to present an interesting object in your picture, it should have the right size.
Watch that it does not occupy more than 1/3 of the picture. This means that you will have enough room for the background which should not be neglected in landscape photography.
You can also position an object to one side of the picture so that it doesn’t detract completely from the background.
The same principle applies here: it doesn’t really matter, what it is – what is important is that one can see straightaway what you are trying to show in the picture.
30 % for an object, and the rest belongs to the beautiful landscape.
If you start using these 3 rules, you, or rather your fans, will notice a difference immediately. The last rule is also valuable in regard to people, because they always need to be connected to the location and the background without either getting lost in the picture or suffocating it.
My last tip, which is more a general one for landscape photography, is about color. Just as you would like to come back from a vacation with a healthy tan, you can apply this principle to pictures. A little more color looks fresher and more alive than cold pallor.