Fall Photography: Seven Tips to Capturing the Season

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We have been having a very intense Indian Summer here in Denver, so it really hasn’t felt like Fall yet. But I know that is going to change soon. Very soon. And the trees have been changing, so we still have “Autumn-ish” things to photograph.

How about you? Is it Fall yet there? How do you go about capturing that season that brings about the end of summer, takes us back to school, and is a precursor to all those holidays?

Favorite Photography Tips

1. Get the color.

Here in Colorado, our fall color is yellow and gold–and when I lived back east, it was all about the red. No matter where you live, there is some kind of color that means Fall, right? Be sure to have a few photos that are just splashes of color – make THAT the subject matter.

2. Get the veins.

You may have to find your “macro” setting on your camera (usually looks like a flower), but when the colors start changing, nothing stands out like the veins in a leaf. Get close and capture those fine lines.

3. Get the nuts and berries.

Go to the store and buy fruits of the harvest… make a place setting, either indoors or out and pull out your camera. Apple, nuts, pine needles, hay, all look lovely together for a still life photo that screams Autumn. Even better, bring the children in for an impromptu homespun portrait session.

4. Get the panorama.

Step back and look at the whole scene. What is special about Fall? The leaves (that people haven’t had a chance to rake up yet) that are gathered along the edge of the lane? The beginnings of Halloween decorations? Walk around your neighborhood and see what Autumn means to you, bring your kids along, and ask them! Or even better – depending on where you live, take a drive away from the city on a random Saturday afternoon and REALLY capture the big picture of Fall.

5. Get the angle.

Fall is playful. Remember to shoot from above, below, to the side and any which way from straight on. OK, sure you’ll want some from in front too – but you will be happier when you have shots from all over the place. Trust me on this!

6. Get the light.

Everything looks better in golden light… During the summer, we have oodles of time in the evening to play with the camera–but as time runs short in the Fall, we have to be quick. Be prepared for the fleeting light, pay attention to when the sun will be setting in your area and plan your photo shoot accordingly.

7. Get the bokeh.

This is for more advanced shooters–but bokeh is when you have small Depth of Field, which creates pleasing patterns in the blurred areas. Try letting leaves that are in front of the subject go blurry, or maybe the grass with nuts scattered behind the subject. Bokeh takes practice, but it’s a fun way to make magic with your Fall photos.

Any questions? Other tips? Let’s share your fun Fall ideas!

Aimee Giese is a graphic designer, web developer and photographer from Denver. You can find her online at Greeblemonkey.com.

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An active part of the Mom It Forward team, Jyl primarily writes about parenting, social good, and all things travel related. In a past life, Jyl was an award-winning copywriter and designer of corporate training programs for Fortune 100 companies. Offline, Jyl is married to @TroyPattee; a mom to two teen boys and a beagle named #Hashtag; loves large amounts of cheese, dancing, and traveling; and lives in the beautiful Rocky Mountains. Topping her bucket list is the goal to visit 50 countries by the time she's 50.


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