Landscape Photography magazines/journals

Discussion in 'Nature' started by k_s|24, Mar 30, 2013.

  1. Hey guys,
    I'm a landscape enthusiast. Currently shooting with a Nikon D600 and 17-35mm f/2.8. Always trying to improve myself and watch lots of tutorials online etc.
    Was thinking about getting a NatGeo subscription because it's dirt cheap and features some of the best landscape photography in the world, but then thought, well it's not actually going to help very much in teaching me about landscape photography, so thought maybe there are magazines geared up to do just that?
    Do you guys know of any good magazines/editorials (online or in print) that do focus on this - basics/technical aspects and post processing etc that you would recommend?
  2. stemked

    stemked Moderator

    In the days of film photography I would have highly recommended John Shaw's Landscape book. I haven't read it in a while, but likely it is dated.

    I cannot comment on the post processing aspects, but critically evaluating a good (or bad) image will give you pointers on what works and what doesn't. Is the light in the right place? Are there 'too many elements'? Does the composition work?
    Personally from a technical side landscapes are not that difficult to understand especially since one tends to go for as much depth of view as possible and therefore sharpness is *usually* a jey ingredient. Also full frame bodies are usually the way to go .
  3. david_henderson


    Landscape photography is like many other photographic genres- much of whats best about it depends on what's going on in the minds of the photographers. There isn't a set of technical instructions or compositional rules the adoption of which makes you into a good landscape photographer.
    Most magazines need revenue from people selling equipment or software to thrive. This drives what they contain and what their emphasis is on. There are less "landscape" orientated mags now than there used to be and those that there are may be less orientated to the act of photography than you'd like. The UK "Outdoor Photography " mag still exists, though I don't know whether the US "Outdoor Photographer" is still around.
    However for me the most useful thing you can do is to spend time looking at the websites or exhibitions of quality photographers with a landscape orientation. Because that way you'll see what people are making of what potential subjects and how they're treating them. You'll see that landscape can transcend making pretty pictures and you'll get an idea about which way the genre is headed.
    There are a lot of pretty good landscape photographers, some of them quite well known, and some of whom are using landscapes to make a number of less obvious points. If I were you I might look at the work of Christopher Burkett; Charlie Waite, Joe Cornish, Edward Burtynsky, David Maisel, Michael Kenna, Roman Lorenc, Bill Schwab,Nadav Kander, Josef Hoflehner, Michael Levin, Linde Waidhofer, Richard Misrach, William Neill, Stephen Shore, Galen Rowell, Ansel Adams, Bruce Barnbaum and so on. You will note that their work is by no means all the same and you will I hope form views about how you want to interpret subjects . And with not a subscription in sight.
    Flickr is another huge resource, and I rarely plan a trip these days without checking to see what's been done at the locations i'm thinking about. You'll find that people who shoot one location well very often have a lot to offer elsewhere too. Look also at the books for sale on Blurb. There is some very high quality stuff there- far better than you'll see in the average article in Popular Photography or similar, thats for sure, and often better than the dwindling supply of photography coffee-table books that make it onto the shelves of booksellers.
  4. There are some great extended presentations sponsored by B&H on YouTube, on landscapes and many other types of photography. Here are links to one on landscapes by Moose Peterson and two by a long time photographer for Nat Geo and others, Michael Melford. Melford's presentations are titled "Qualities of Light and Composition" and "The Basics of Nature Photography". Both of Melford's presentations cover plenty of material that is either about or directly relevant to landscapes.
  5. The UK magazine Outdoor Photography is, from what I have seen, the best--large format, crisp printing, informative features, and a professional level of photography. Unfortunately, for those of us not residing in the UK, most tips for shooting locations are a bit out of reach for the weekend trip. Still worth a subscription for the US based photographer. Outdoor Photographer in the US is so so. Unlike Outdoor Photography which describes specific locations, Outdoor Photographer provides rather generic tips "how to take better pictures". Maybe this would be the best choice for you but at some point this gets repetitive. Print quality is just ok, magazine is full of advertisement. Nature Photographer has location specific information, good print quality, and nice photography contributed by readers. The text could frequently benefit from better editing but I guess the text is secondary in a photography magazine. The focus of National Geographic is clearly not the landscape but the people inhabiting it. I find that there are actually rather few landscape feature articles in it but clearly it shines for its variety of topics and professional quality. I remember the German magazine GEO with stunning travel photography but I have not had an issue in my hands for many years.
  6. Not a magazine, but the recent book, "National Audubon Society Guide to Landscape Photography" by Tim Fitzharris is excellent. Also read, "The Inner Game of Outdoor Photography" by Galen Rowell, "Examples; The Making of 40 Photographs" by Ansel Adams, and, indeed, any book by Ansel Adams.
  7. National Geographic is great for inspiration, but as you noted, it's otherwise not a good teaching tool. They do however offer a number of field guides and how-to books in their online store. They also provide photography tips on their website.
  8. Have you seen Nature Photographer magazine? It is not directed at landscape photography specifically but
    at nature photography in general and always a few articles on technique. Excellent photography with
    technical details and sometimes addition detail in the articles on an area or how the photos were taken.
    Excellent magazine that I pick up at Barnes & Noble.

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