Fall Colours

This looks like THE weekend for fall colours in southern Ontario. 

So how do you shoot leaves?

First, you should be shooting RAW if you have RAW photo editing software.

Second, a tripod would be nice (but not essential). You can use your self-timer if you don’t have a remote shutter control or shutter cable.

And third, you’ll want a digital polarizing filter that fits the lens that you use for landscapes. If you don’t have a polarizing filter (which makes the colours really pop) you can duplicate the effect in software.

So which software should you have?

Adobe Photoshop Elements costs less than $100 and it’s terrific. If you’re shooting tons of shots then Lightroom 3 has some advantages as it’s also a database for your images. Finally, if you’ve got a ton of cash then go buy Photoshop CS5. I love NIK software and I use Seim Effects (in Lightroom). If you’re shooting with a Nikon DSLR then Capture NX2 is fabulous and my personal favourite for landscapes. BTW NIK is coming out with a  HDR software package and based on my experience with the rest of their software I’d love to get my hands on a copy so I can do an evaluation for you.

Now if you don’t have a DSLR but just a point and shoot that captures images in JPG format don’t despair. I’ve used my two Fuji point and shoots on some of my vacations and the images are terrific. A point and shoot in the hands of somebody who knows what they’re doing will produce better images than those of somebody with an expensive DSLR, a bag of lenses and no clue about what to do next.

If you’ve got an 18-55mm kit lens, that’s perfect for shooting landscapes.

All the images here were shot by me and my wife during a trip to Algonquin Park last fall.

So get out there and have fun. Don’t forget to post your photos on Flickr so we can all view them.

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