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Top Forest Photography Tips For Fall & Beyond

Grab your camera and head for the woods with these handy forest photography tips.

| Landscape and Travel

Capturing the might and vigour of the forest is something photographers can enjoy at any time of the year, but the Autumn season adds an extra level of magic to these shots which means right now is an even more perfect time to head to the woods with your camera. To fill you with inspiration, are here to share a few tips on capturing the perfect forest themed shot. 


Tree canopy



Lines, being one of the six fundamental design elements, can result in rather pleasing imagery when you use them the right way and as forests are naturally full of vertical lines, you're practically onto a winner when you first step foot in one. The sheer height and might of trees are really exaggerated when you focus on their shape and this becomes even more so when you shoot up with a wide-angle lens as the tree tops almost look like they burst from the frame. You can also add shafts of light to the mix to create a really amazing photo. 


Colour Combos

A forest can actually be pretty stingy with its assortment of hues (if it’s not Autumn that is). The lack of obvious contrast can be really overwhelming but the white of Birch trees can really stand out against a palette of green and further into Winter, you can focus on macros of blood red berries sat against a dark bottle green carpet. In Autumn, you have an abundance of different shades to work with so do take advantage of it and get outside as strong winds tend to mean they don't hang around for long. 


Shadow Theatre

Despite being pretty much stripped of leaves, Winter can still be a great time to capture images in woodland areas. Look for untouched and pristine surfaces where the trunks create beautiful drawing patterns with their shadows. Early morning with freshly fallen snow is a great time to shoot these.


Snow and trees



The constant conjunction of green and brown can make it hard to highlight something extraordinary in/about the picture. You can, however, switch to shooting in black and white to capture an image that focuses much more on texture. It'll help if you shoot in black & white so you can preview your shots and hunt out the best scenery for your monochrome imagery. 


Don't Forget The Essentials 

Pack your tripod, light levels will be low in places so it's an essential piece of equipment and even though you have a smartphone, a map and compass will still be handy in case you lose signal. A good backpack with room for equipment as well as food and extra layers will also be useful.


Lens Choices 

Pack a 24-50mm lens, such as the Nikon AF 24-50mm f/3.3 - 4.5 or the Minolta AF 24-50mm f/4 zoom lens. This kind of range will give you the option to shoot wide shots of trees as well as macro close-ups of moss and fungus. Telephotos will pull detail out whilst, as mentioned, shooting up at the canopy with a wide-angle will exaggerate the shape and size of the trees. 


Top Forest Photography Tips For Fall & Beyond : Trees

Photo by Joshua Waller 

Other Top Tips

  • Since a forest offers a lot of depth to explore in every direction, use a small aperture.
  • Use a polariser filter. Besides enhancing the forest tonalities and enriching the depth of darker hues, it will also remove aesthetically unpleasant reflections from leaves and water.
  • Be set up and ready two to three hours after sunrise or before sunset as after all, the golden hour is called the golden hour for a reason. 
  • Hard as it may be, try to find some wildlife to add another level of interest to your shots. 
  • Since forest is a tricky setting to take photos of (bright sky plus dark ground) it is important to keep an eye on exposure levels. 


Framing & Mounting Your Forest Photos 

Considering the depth that the forest environment offers, the best way to display your results would be on acrylic glass but there are also a plethora of other options available on the website. 

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