David Muench is a world class landscape photographer. So when he recommends his favorite national parks, I pay attention.
I know, April seems like an odd time of year to write an article on winter photography hot spots. But I was going through old photography magazines before consigning them to the recycling bin and found a great article on winter photography hot spots.
Posted April 3, 2018. Updated April 9, 2018.
Looking for wildlife this year? If you want to photograph wildlife you need to find wildlife. A good wildlife location guide can send you to the right places and save you hours or days of frustration looking in all the wrong places.
I came across an article on the prettiest drives in America. One of the photos that jumped out at me is this excellent photo of appropriately named “Thunder Hole”. Kudos to Sue Anne Hodges for this image (and my thanks to her for permission to use this image). It is filled with action, intensity, and drama. You can feel what it would be like to get drenched if you were at the end of the observation area.
What are the best national parks to photograph in the fall? Here are my choices, grouped by state and province from west to east. This list includes the favorites I have been to, plus the ones I most want to see based on the recommendations of the photographers I trust, like Tim Fitzharris and QT Luong. More about them later.
Fall is a fabulous time of year to visit the national parks. Crowds are usually smaller than in the summer, temperatures are cooler, and some of our national parks have glorious fall colors. With so many to choose from, where should you go? Which national parks will provide the best photographic opportunities in the fall?
Welcome to my Colorado fall color travel and photography guide with over 100 pages of information (if you print it all out), 114 photos, and 17 maps. I cover some of the best known fall color locations in Colorado, and one real gem of a road that is mostly unknown to photographers and leaf peepers. Spend anywhere from a few days to three weeks exploring the beautiful Colorado Rockies at a gorgeous time of year.
What are the best national parks to photograph in the summer? Here are my choices, grouped by state from west to east. This list includes the favorites I have been to and want to go back to again, plus the ones I haven’t seen and most want to photograph.
Summer is the most popular time to visit the national parks. With so many to choose from, where should you go? Which national parks will provide the best photographic opportunities in the summer?
If I could go on a fabulous spring photography trip to the national parks of my choice, with no time limit and all expenses paid, which ones would I pick? Here are my choices, grouped by state from west to east. This list includes the favorites I have been to and want to go back to again, plus the ones I haven’t seen and most want to photograph.
Are you planning a spring photography trip to some U.S. national parks? Where should you go? Which parks will provide the best photographic opportunities? Which parks are at their best in the spring?
I learned the hard way that a poorly positioned outside car mirror can cost you some great wildlife images.
Planning a trip to photograph some of our national parks? You will get better images if you visit a national park at its prime season of the year. But when is each park at its very best? And how about great locations that aren’t in the national parks? This article has answers.
Originally posted January 18, 2017. Re-posted February 8, 2018. Most recent update: February 10, 2018.
Just like metering daytime winter scenes, the key to metering evening winter scenes is knowing what to meter and deciding how much exposure compensation to use.
Most wildlife are medium to dark in tone, making them a challenge to meter properly in the bright, white tones of winter. If you trust one of your camera’s automatic exposure modes, the odds are good you won’t get the best exposure. If you switch over to manual exposure and make the right decisions, you can get great exposures and better quality photos (more about that later).
Metering dark toned wildlife in the snow is a major exposure challenge. It is usually best to avoid large “burned out” areas (washed out, featureless white) in a nature or landscape photograph, but with properly exposed snow, the wildlife can be so dark as to lose all texture. On other hand, metering for the wildlife can burn out the snow. So what do you do?
Metering for scenes with a lot of snow can be tricky since the bright snow fools the camera meter. I see a lot of winter photos with gray snow, which means the camera meter did exactly what it was designed to do. The solution is quite simple provided you know what to do.
In addition to all of the usual photographic challenges, winter provides some extra complications, especially in terms of metering. So I began my series of articles on winter photography. Check out the links below. The articles will help you meet the unique challenges of winter photography. So get out there, have fun, and create some great winter images!
Each a winter I think about a photography trip to some U.S. national parks, some of which I haven’t been to before. I always need to narrow down my choices to fit the time I have for the trip. My search for information is what led to the advice in this article. After you read this article I recommend you also read the companion article: The Best National Parks to Photograph in Winter.
Originally posted January 17, 2017. Updated and re-posted January 3, 2018.
Winter provides some wonderful photo opportunities in our national parks. So if you haven’t gone into hibernation for the winter, here are the best national parks to go photograph this winter, grouped by state from the west to the east. There are a few bonus locations thrown in too. At the end I give you my “best of the best” list.
Posted January 17, 2017. Updated and re-posted January 3, 2018.
If there are cold enough temperatures and plenty of snow cover on the ground, the northern United States has a winter invasion of Snowy Owls. These are magnificent creatures and well worth your photographic time and attention. This series is filled with tips on how to find and photograph snowy owls.
What is a Snowy Owl expedition really like? This article is your chance to find out. Join me for a two day photo safari! I give you tips and photo suggestions along the way, and you get to see how I prepare, plan, and adapt on a photo trip. This is also about what to do when things don’t go according to plan.
Winter is your opportunity to photograph Snowy Owls. When it is cold enough and there is enough snow cover, snowy owl move down into the northern U.S. The colder it is the farther south they move. If conditions are right, don’t delay. If the winter turns warmer the snowy owls will head farther north.
This is the first in an ongoing series of articles on Snowy Owl photography. Originally posted January 25, 2016. Revised and re-posted Jan. 1, 2018.
Now is your chance to see and photograph snowy owls in Colorado. Don’t miss it. This is a rare opportunity. There was not a single snowy owl sighting reported in Colorado all of last winter. The map above shows snowy owl sightings for the month of December 2017. Snowy Owls like cold and snow. A 20 degree uptick in the temperature and the sightings could all end for this winter. Go now.
Good news! The recent really cold weather and new snow cover means snowy owls have moved farther south across the United States. This is just what you need if you want to photograph these magnificent creatures. They move farther south as the temperature drops and go back north as the temperature rises.
“If you want to be a better photographer stand in front of more interesting stuff!” – Jim Richardson, National Geographic photographer.
A good scenic location guide can save you from wasting hours of precious time searching for the best spots at a new location. The best scenic locations guides are written by and for photographers. Photographers are much more in tune with what other photographers want to photograph. And for each location, photographers will tell you the best season of the year and the best time of day to get the best images. Some will give you additional photography advice for each location.
Posted December 8, 2017. Updated April 20, 2018.
The first step to photographing wildlife is finding wildlife and one of the best ways to find wildlife is to look at wildlife location books. They will save you hours of frustration by sending you to the best locations to find wildlife.
Another photographer and I were shooting together yesterday at Brandywine Falls in Cuyahoga National Park. During the time we were there we saw dozens of people taking pictures of the waterfall. Most of them were in full auto-exposure mode, making no personal changes in their exposure settings whether they were photographing the waterfall, each other, or the leaves in the trees. I bet most of them had no idea that they had turned important artistic decisions over to a computer chip.
Bob, my brother-in-law, and I were driving down the Peak to Peak Scenic Byway and stopped at the classic overlook between mile 38 and mile 39 between Nederland and Ward Colorado. This is a great location for both grand and intimate landscapes.