When I was a child, autumn was my favorite season. I loved the appearance of the first colored leaves – and the inevitable explosion of red and gold as the maples shifted their hue. And shooting fall foliage is so much fun. 🙂 I love to take my camera out into the woods – Cuyahoga Valley National Park is near our home – and photograph the beautiful leaves.
Blue and gold are complimentary colors, so autumn landscapes can really pop. You can use a circular polarizer to bring out rich colors in the sky and in the leaves themselves. Watch for uneven polarization if you are using a circular polarizer filter on a wide-angle lens.
Look for simple compositions in the woods, where the scene can feel cluttered with distractions. Look for repeating patterns and colors, and use them to help simplify your photos for a more appealing finished product.
I like to use long exposures on blustery autumn days. Doing so creates motion blur, and the shifting colors and patterns can be really appealing. Don’t put your camera away when the wind comes up. Instead, see if you can create something unique.
I love using rivers and streams as leading lines in my photographs. When you are working with a very busy scene, leading lines can help lead the viewers eye through the image, and provide a place to rest.
Autumn is a great time to pay close attention to details, too. Look for interesting patterns and textures, and pay close attention to your background. Use the negative space to create a sense of place and create a mood.