There is an old convention among landscape photographers that getting an interesting foreground is a very desirable element in a lot of landscape photographs. From the shots below, you can certainly see why that would be. But what do you look for in a good landscape foreground and how do you go about shooting it well? Here are some things to think about to get your landscape foregrounds rocking.
First thing’s first – make sure you know what to look for. In addition to the obvious thing of looking for interesting subjects like logs, rocks, fields etc, there are a couple of habits that can help you ensure you get the right composition for your landscape photographs.
Tilt Up and Down – A very good habit for a landscape photographer to develop starts at the moment they look through the view finder. Typically you want to make sure that you are aware of the possible shots from your location. After you have placed the subjects where you think you want them in your view finder, while still looking through the view finder, simply tilt the camera up above the scene and then down below it.
What you are looking for here is an obvious superior composition. It only takes a second and it can help ensure that you get the best composition from your location.
Get to Know Your Location – Often a landscape photographer will need to return to a scene many times for several reasons. For starters, scenes (including foregrounds) change dramatically in different lighting at different times of the day. You want to make sure you are there for the right time – and that means having been there enough to know when the right time for that scene actually is. Often it will be around the golden hour or blue hour but that isn’t always the case.