01.20/Landscapes

One of my favorite places to pursue landscape photos is in the Hocking Hills. … The waterfalls, deep, rocky gorges and towering, forested hills make Hocking Hills State Park a perfect area for landscape photography.

‍I’ve captured a number of landscape or scenic photographs through the years, but it’s definitely not my specialty. I’m not a very good landscape photographer. I admit it. I accept it. And I’m trying to improve.

‍I’ve often said that I don’t “see” landscapes like other photographers do. Where they see lines and angles and colors and symmetry, I see a bunch of trees or a field or a stream. 

‍It’s odd that when I’m in a large city I see the lines and angles and color and symmetry in the architecture. I think that’s because I’m actively looking for those elements when I’m walking a city with my camera. 

‍When I’m in the wild I’m usually carrying a long lens for wildlife photography and don’t spend time studying my surroundings for the compositional elements that make eye-catching landscape photos.

‍But in the last few years I have made several trips to local parks with one goal: landscapes. I leave my super telephoto wildlife lens at the house and carry shorter lenses, a tripod and other equipment used for landscapes. And I study my surroundings, looking for scenes that capture the mood of the area.

‍It’s not easy. As a matter of fact, it’s hard work setting up for a shot with a camera on a tripod, composing the scene in the camera’s viewfinder, capturing the scene, then breaking everything down again to continue my hike. But I think I’m getting better.

‍One of my favorite places to pursue landscape photos is in the Hocking Hills, an area with unique (for Ohio, anyway) terrain that’s a little more than an hour’s drive from my house. The waterfalls, deep, rocky gorges and towering, forested hills make Hocking Hills State Park a perfect area for landscape photography, even for someone as landscape-challenged as I am.

‍I’ve also found several other parks closer to home that have provided some interesting landscape opportunities. And I’ve captured some landscape scenes in cities, an area where I seem to see landscapes better than in the wild.

‍I’m still not a very good landscape photographer, but I do have some usable photos in my collection. I’ll just say I’m a work in progress.

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