Fall is here, and that means fall colour. After a hot summer with long near drought-like conditions, many people were projecting an early fall with little colour. Turns out that the colour this year has been spectacular! If you would like to get out and improve your fall photos here is my top five tips for getting perfect fall photos…
Find out Peek Colour Times and Locations
Here is Central Ontario we are very lucky to have many resources to help us find out when and where to see the fall colours at their peak. One of my favourite sites to check is Ontario Parks Fall Colour Report. This site has a very detailed listing of what the dominate leaf colour is, the percentage of colour change, and the percentage of leaf fall. Another site to keep your eye on is ontariotravel.net. Ontario Travel has also put together a great resource for Great Fall Drives, to help you track down the most scenic routes.
Every Day is a good day to shoot.
Do not discount overcast days or days with light drizzle. On the days that there is a little drizzle in the air, the extra water on leaves and rocks can help to saturate the colours. If the sky is overcast and otherwise “ugly” compose your photos without the sky in the frame. The overcast sky will give your photo a much different look and feel that one that was taken on a bright sunny day. An overcast sky also helps slow shutter speeds, and blur motion, which leads nicely into my next point.
Filter, filter, filter.
If you have lens filters in your photography arsenal this is the time of year to use them. Use a polarizing filter to increase contrast in your photos making the colours richer. Use a neutral density filter to show motion. There is also an array of different colour filters. These filters have the ability to change the feel of the scene. A blue filter can make the photo feel cold and on the verge of winter. While warming filters can make your fall photo feel more like an Indian summer.
Don’t just take a drive and hop out of your car every now and then to take a snapshot. Go somewhere and then go for a walk to get away from the car and the pictures that everybody and their brother have all ready taken. While you are on your walk get high, get low, any position that you can, other than eye level. If the only thing that you take away from this post is it changes the perspective of your pictures you will notice an increase in “keepers” at the end of the day.
Get out and Shoot!
Simple as that. It doesn’t matter what gear you have, or how well you know how to use it. If you don’t get out and use all that expensive gear and knowledge, you won’t get any great fall photos.