Thursday, December 17, 2009

My Boring Landscape Photos

In the last one year, I joined a number of ‘model photography’ class. I have posted many pictures of the beautiful models to my blog. Some of the female readers must be cursing me already. So I decided to try something else – landscape and cityscape.

I have, for example, photograph KLCC night view and a few deserted towns. I have also taken this picture in an oil palm plantation (the trees had been cut down)…

Somehow, my landscape / cityscape photos are never as exciting as my model photos. They are also no match to those taken by French/Canadian blogger Zhu. I think there are a few reasons which explain why my landscape and cityscape pictures are so dull.

First and foremost, I am inexperienced in this kind of photography. I am pretty busy and hardly travel to scenic places. By comparison, shooting pretty models can be done in half a day over the weekend.

Secondly, there aren’t many interesting places around here. Plus, there are no four seasons in this country, so I can’t photograph autumn foliage or winter snow. In essence, lack of interesting themes also explains why I seldom shoot landscape photos.

And finally, my gears could be a limiting factor. Landscape photos are often best taken with ultra-wide angle lens, which I do not yet own. The picture of oil palm plantation shown above was shot at 17mm. I wish I had shot it at 15mm – that would qualify as ultra-wide. Alas, 2mm makes a lot of difference.

I can’t afford an ultra wide angle lens for at least another year, as I am saving money to replace my 5-year old laptop and to buy a GPS device. For now, I think I will go back to shoot models.


  1. Khengsiong, just follow your heart and the photos will turn out fine. Many photographers shoot with minimal equipment and I admire the way they can make a picture come alive. A photographer is like an artist who draws a portrait, sketch or paint landscape. It is how he expresses himself that is most important. It is your passion that makes the picture. This is only 'imo' or 2 cents worth because I am also not a photographer, just a blogger.

  2. hey, think this, if u get to shoot more pretty models, it is a sweeter deal than shooting landscape right?

  3. Don't shoot pictures. Create images. Landscape need not be boring. The challenge is in the photographer creating an image out of something ordinary (or seemingly boring).

    I try to do that with everything I shoot. I try to create images. I don't like shooting pictures.

    I guess you will flow along as you progress in your photographic journey. Recently, I have not been shooting much on the subject of people. I am focusing more on landscapes and anything else that strikes my fancy.

    I dislike event and wedding photography.

  4. GPS you can get for less than RM500! :) And I'll be waiting for the day that you get your wide angle lens and post up the landscape photos. :)

  5. Autumn Belle, Mei Ting
    But there is nothing much to shoot around here, and I am too busy to travel.

    Haha... you may be right.

    Thanks. Hopefully one year from now :P

  6. i have not really try landscape shoots. The main thing is the color, contrast and sharpness at least that's what I feel. Maybe the use of longer shutter speed with tripod will work better? I don't know. just some thoughts only. :)

  7. I just bought an eos 500 and is learning to play with it at the moment. I love to look at spectacular landscape as well as close-up photos. Hope to be able to shoot some nice photos in the future.

    Port Dickson sea view, Cameron Highland's vast tea plantation and mountaineous view may be good places for landscape photography....

  8. Cameron Highlands' tea plantations r great. You should make a visit there one day. Perhaps the islands off the East Coast can do the same too.

  9. Yes, I have to admit your landscape photos are not as interesting as the models photos. Haha!

    But I don't agree with no interesting places here. I'm sure there are, maybe it's not the place but the photos you take that makes the difference!

    But who am I to give advice since I'm an amateur in photography? LOL!

  10. Leon
    Composition makes a big difference, but this is where ultra-wide angle comes in.

    Grass, kyh
    Have been to Cameron Highlands a couple of times.

    So I shall go back to shoot models?

  11. Thanks for the nice words ;-)

    I'm the opposite: I need to work on my portrait skills but I don't have any model around.

    You should narrow down a bit "landscape" photography. For example, you could walk around your city, looking for "urban" pictures - anything small that catches your eye. An old rusty bike, funny mailboxes, street signs, graffiti etc. Basically, find a theme and stick to it - that's how I do it. The old side of your city, the modern side. Look for contrast, for patterns etc.

    As for camera, I only have a Nikon D-60 with an 18-55 mm lens. Nothing fancy ;-)

  12. MAN I wish I had a scene like yours. just get closer to the subjects as wide angles make them tiny! Wow you should come to where I live and try to find somewhere worth photographing as I am struggling with all that dirt and electric poles...