If you’re staying home and social distancing because of the pandemic, you might be looking for ways to keep busy and stay creative. Many of our students are reaching out to share ideas and ways to stay inspired during times when it’s not as easy to get in the car and drive to interesting locations to practice our photography.
While staying home definitely limits us in the things we might be used to photographing, and although we may need to take a break from those activities and travels for the time being, don’t get discouraged. There are still opportunities for you to practice your photo taking skills from the comfort of your own neighborhood.
If you have trees in your backyard, practicing your tree photography is a great way to get some nature and landscape photography practice under your belt while keeping your social distance. If you don’t have trees in your backyard, be sure to wear your mask and take CDC Covid19 precautions and go for a little walk around your neighborhood to find some trees you can use as a subject for this exercise.
Getting started, try to pick a tree that looks most compelling to you and one that you’d most like to use as your subject for this activity. Whether it’s a large, colorful tree in your front yard lush with pink floral blooms, or a large old oak up your street that you’ve always admired. Your first step is to make a decision about what you would like to focus on as the chief subject of your composition.
Get Creative With Your Settings
From there, try starting with an aperture of f/22 if you are interested in keeping the entire image in focus - the tree itself, the foreground and the setting behind it. Using f/22 as an aperture starting point is a good method to employ if you’re looking to keep the entire image equally in focus.
If you are interested in taking a different approach and creating more of a bokeh effect instead of keeping your entire image in perfect focus, try an aperture of f/8. By using this setting, you will be able to achieve the aesthetic of gentle, surrounding, out-of focus blur in your image.
Explore Nature and Landscape Photography
If nature and landscape photography is a genre that specifically intrigues you, and you find yourself interested in doing more outdoor photography exercises like this one in more comprehensive detail, you should consider signing up for a formal photography course.
The New York Institute of Photography offers a self-paced, nature and landscape photography class you can take entirely online. In this program, professional photographers explain the nuances of composition, exposure and framing so you can work to take better pictures of wildlife, flowers, landscapes and more. For more information on how to get started in this online course, call 1 800-583-1736 or click here.