Tips to Shoot Famous Landscape Photography in NYC

The iconic Statue of Liberty courtesy of Unplash.com

The iconic Statue of Liberty courtesy of Unplash.com

Although we're lacking mountains and waterfalls in New York City, it's still a great place to get practice on landscape photography, where the emphasis is capturing interesting wide angles of your subject.

While living in New York City, you'll have access to famous monuments to build your portfolio of urban landscape photography. It's a great way to get started as a beginner, or diversify your portfolio as a professional photographer.

As a beginner photographer, photopreneur or Instagram enthusiast, you'll likely put off investing in an expensive camera. However, this fact shouldn't dissuade you from exploring the wonderful world of photography - the art of storytelling through a still image.

New York City has a wealth of famous landmarks to add to your portfolio of landscape photography:

  • The Statue of Liberty
  • The Empire State Building
  • Grand Central Station
  • Brooklyn Bridge and the various other bridges
  • The United Nations building
  • The New York City Subway!
NYC landscape photography

It's entirely possible to build a strong portfolio of landscape photography, using only famous New York City landmarks. Indeed, there have been many photographs of these iconic monuments. But as a photographer, it's your job to find that unique angle... or that unique story that you can distill in one powerful still image.

Although this quick guide mentions New York City, certainly it's applicable to other cities in the world:

  • Barcelona
  • Paris
  • London
  • Berlin
  • Manila
  • Tokyo
  • Sydney
Courtesy of Unsplash.com

Courtesy of Unsplash.com

So grab your favorite mobile camera or your go-to professional camera. 

Capturing pictures of various sceneries will never be this breathtaking without these six landscape photography tips for you to consider.

1. Look for focal points.

All shots need a focal point, and landscapes are not an exception. In fact, taking landscape photos without ended up looking empty will leave viewers wondering how the image was edited.

Focal points have a way of capturing many types of landscapes and can be in a form of silhouette or structure.

2. Always use a tripod.

To achieve longer and consistent shutter speeds during landscape shoots, you need a tripod. This is to simply ensure that your SLR camera is entirely “still” during exposure.

Even if you’re shooting at quicker shutter speeds, using a tripod is a big advantage. To put in some camera stillness during landscape shooting, use a wireless or cable shutter release device.

Source: Unsplash

Source: Unsplash

3. Capture the movement.

When we think about a landscape, what usually comes to our mind is a serene, tranquil and laid-back environment.

Nevertheless, landscapes shoots are used to conveying a movement that lets an image add color, mood, and drama or create a point of interest.

Capturing a movement essentially means you need to look closely at longer shutter speeds. Meaning, the more light hitting your sensor, the less aperture or small filters needed.

4. Always maximize your depth of field.

There are times that you want to be a little experimental over narrow depths of field in landscape shooting. However, the normal approach is to make sure that your scene is completely focused as possible.

Source: Vincent Guth (Unsplash)

Source: Vincent Guth (Unsplash)

The simplest way to maximize your depth of field is by choosing the appropriate “aperture setting” for your shots. Take note that the smaller your aperture setting is, the greater your depth is. Smaller aperture settings mean hitting the image sensors under minimal light.

5. Your shots must work with the weather.

This is one of the most important landscape photography tips to take note. A scene dramatically changes depending on the weather. To achieve best results in taking shots of a landscape, choosing the best time to shoot is essential.

A lot of amateur photographers love taking pictures under a sunny afternoon. On the other hand, an overcast afternoon threatening unexpected rains can present you a much satisfying opportunity to shoot landscapes that sets a realistic mood.

So look for dark skies, thunder, rains, mist, wind, dramatic clouds and rainbow then take a shot of it right away!

6. Consider the skies.

Also one of the most important landscape photography tips, the sky is a big element of a scenic landscape. Many landscapes are surrounded by a dominant forefront that instills relaxation especially in the eye.

Courtesy of the iPhone

Courtesy of the iPhone

If you have a mild or somewhat boring sky, don’t let it subjugated by your shots. Instead, situate the horizon along the upper third corner of your shot. If the sky is filled with a lot of drama but with interesting colors and cloud formation, allow them to shine better by lowering the horizon.

Summary of Famous Landscape Photography

In today's world, it's easy to get started on urban photography. The famous landmarks were built a long time ago, and everyone has access to powerful cameras in their back pocket.

Just pull out your iPhone or Samsung and start taking powerful still images of the famous landmarks around you. These photographs would be a welcome addition to your landscape photography portfolio.