Seasonal photography is always a challenge. You can delve so deeply into it that you might cross the blurry line between creative and corny images. It is likely that you struggle with this in autumn when there’s an abundance of colors and pressure from updating your portfolio in light of the many upcoming holidays.
There’s no way you (as well as thousands of novice photographers) haven’t gone through all of the typical fall photography ideas at the dawn of your career. We’re talking about close-up photography of raindrops, a reflection of trees in a pond and a child throwing colorful leaves. The Internet is flooded with this kind of images and if you continue to photograph typical autumnal concepts, your works are unlikely to be noticed.
You can make your fall photography stand out if you research a bit and challenge your imagination. For instance, you can shoot a leaf-covered field at sunrise, try seasonal food photography styling or capture authentic emotions during the Thanksgiving celebration.
In this article, you’ll find some really useful fall photography ideas, from challenging established classical representations of fall to trying something new with seasonal photography.
1. Sunrise photography
Photography is all about light. The challenge is finding the balance in colors, with the right lighting and correct exposure. Working with sunsets and sunrises is, therefore, a bit more difficult because lighting changes every second.
If you aim to capture magical autumn photographs, you’ll have to sacrifice your sleep and wake up early to spot the golden hours after the sunrise. The lighting conditions are tough, but every day will get your photographs with a different look and feel. At dawn, the light is especially mild and warm and your shots will look authentic and natural.
To make the most of the golden morning hours, check out these sunrise photography tips.
Sunrise photography tips:
- Check the weather forecast. Autumn is unpredictable.
- Visit your location in advance and think about the composition.
- Decide on the angles and viewpoints. During the sunrise, you won’t have too much time for that.
- Use a tripod. With it, you’ll get a sharper picture.
2. Fine art photography
If you have always wanted to try fine art photography, autumn is the best time for that. Nights are dark and foggy, trees are leafless and Halloween is just around the corner. Seems like you’ve already got all your materials before you at this time of the year.
Choose a spooky location like an abandoned laboratory, dense forest or a cemetery. Rent thematic costumes, get additional props and invite an enthusiastic model who will gladly join you for photoshoot adventures.
You should also keep in mind that fine art photography requires a lot of prior preparation. It is not enough to come to the set and improvise. If you want your photography to be worth sharing or buying, you need to think carefully about the scenes, angles, and composition.
3. Photography in the rain
Whether you’re shooting people or nature, fall photography in the rain is spectacular. When it’s a slight drizzle you can do the street style, love story or lifestyle photography. During heavy rain, you can pay attention to the urban landscapes and try to capture how concrete jungle look in this kind of weather conditions. If you’re short of fall photography ideas you can even shoot reflections of buildings or people in puddles. These photos will look surreal.
If you are lucky enough, you may even catch the rainbow. It usually appears when the rain ends and the sun comes out so you’d better be on the lookout.
Rain photography tips:
- protect your camera with a rain sleeve
- backlight the rain if you want your photography in the rain to look even more dramatic
4. Urban photography
Cities take on a whole new different appearance rainy weather. It is always great to capture that unusual state, especially in autumn when even bus stops and road signs look mysterious.
To make your fall photography stand out in sunny weather, you can go to the city centre and shoot the colorful shades of autumn on neutral backgrounds: grey buildings and blue sky. For example, you can never get enough of autumnal pictures of Central Park in New York. Orange, yellow, and green treetops with skyscrapers in the background look romantic and inspiring. You can also focus on contrast and juxtapositions during unpredictable weather.
Urban photography tips:
- In autumn, always carry your camera with you. You never know when the city will be ready for the perfect shot.
- Tell a story. Sometimes a picture with a random composition can reveal more than a well-framed shot.
- Experiment. Urban photography is not only about architecture but city life in general.
5. Food photography styling
Autumn is the harvesting period and street markets are full of fruit and vegetables. They’re delicious but also perfectly fit a festive Thanksgiving table or Halloween decorations. They also make for outstanding photographs when arranged artistically. You can adorn an entire house or table with flowers, leaves, candles, and other decorations. Photographs with these autumn details will translate seasonal coziness and warmth.
Another way to go about food styling shots is studio photography. With it, you can experiment at every stage, from making up an interesting concept to post-processing in new ways. You are free to mix and match foods, change backgrounds and use props to create diverse compositions. What’s even more exciting, you can dry leaves and flowers to make your food styling photography more atmospheric.
Studio photography is also a good chance for stock photographers to diversify their portfolios and get some royalties. Seasonal images are always in demand among clients. They use them for social media posts, holiday marketing campaigns, website hero images, and backgrounds for projects.
6. Photography of people
To translate more emotions, you can take pictures of people. Try to capture authentic moments of real joy, excitement or even sadness. Do some spontaneous shots at the festive table and on the street. Photograph your relatives or friends instead of professional models. Sincerity and authenticity of the moment is a long-standing trend.
Here are some fall photography ideas that will help you capture the most authentic moments of the season.
- Shoot the Halloween preparations
- Do the snapshots of queues on Black Friday
- Photograph a festive Thanksgiving dinner
Each of these fall photography ideas is an opportunity to make the most of the season. You might have to wake up early to spot the magical moment of the sunrise. Your clothes will be wet because of the rain when you’ll be capturing urban landscapes. You’ll also have to eat cold food because it may cool down while you’ll be making your compositions. But eventually, you’ll realize that all those efforts were worth it.
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