There’s no doubt that all of us here at Visual Wilderness are big fans of the outdoors, and all love shooting inspiring landscapes. While landscape photography can be done at any time during the day or night, there vast majority of photographers will generally agree that some conditions are better than others. A goal that each of us landscape photographers aspire to, is to be able to reach out to the viewer, mesmerise them, and pull them into the photograph. In order to do that, you need to capture emotion and mood within that frame. A great way to do that is to seek out specific elements, like fog, and involve that as a feature into your scene.
As a photographer, you can utilise fog in a number of ways to increase the effectiveness of your photos. Lets look at a few examples of how.
One thing for sure, a moody photograph will often gain more attention than those without it. It introduces emotion and helps give the viewer a sense as if they were there.
In the photograph above, the low lying fog slowly drifting through the valleys with the high points reaching above the cloud, really generates mood in the scene. Without it, the image would appear flatter with less intensity.
Isolate your subject
Fog is great for blocking out the rest of the scene, leaving only the subject you’re shooting.
In this example, the sunlight bursting through the tree line on the steep inclining mountain was the focus. Without fog here, the background would be clearly visible and what I wanted to capture wouldn’t stand out anywhere near as much. The fog also helped to accentuate the sunlight as it poked through the gaps in the tree.
Make it mysterious
With everything in focus and equally lit up, the scene becomes transparent very quickly to the viewer. With the introduction of fog into the scene and potentially even using it to hide a portion of the image, it leaves the viewer with a sense of mystery and helps stimulate their imagination.
With this particular photograph, the ruins extend back into the image, slowly fading away into the jungle that’s been enveloped with mist. It naturally makes the viewers imagination kick in, leaving them wonder what else is back there.
Great for silhouettes
Similar with isolating your subjects, the fog is great at removing the backdrop of a frame and allowing your subject to be easily noticeable. Due to the heavy amount of moisture in the air, fog will often remove much detail, texture and colour of your subject, leaving a silhouetted appearance. This can be utilised to your advantage, and give you an opportunity to create a more surreal and artistic scene.
Here a family of zebras slowly graze on the upper volcanic rim of the Ngorongoro Crater. Taken early morning with dense low cloud, it was a brilliant opportunity to capture the animals in a completely different light and grab some amazing silhouettes.