Landscape photography strives to preserve the natural beauty of a particular scene. Many photography purists argue that true landscape photos do not include any sort of coastline or urban settings – otherwise they would be referred to as seascapes or cityscapes. It is also a common belief that people, animals and other human-influence on the scene should be limited. Although this may seem limiting, it by no means is – nature’s beauty has no bounds. In this post we will explore different landscape photography styles used to create different impacts on an image.
The Representational style is sometimes referred to as as straight or straight descriptive, because it is just that – straight forward. This approach represents the landscape in its most basic, natural form. Images that are created in this style do not have any additional props or editing for the image to have impact. That doesn’t mean that representational photos are boring, photographers must keep in mind basic photography elements like framing, lighting, composition, etc. to ensure the final cut has an impact. It is the realness of the shot and the great attention to details that create a great representational landscape photograph.
This technique is gives more interpretation to the landscape image. Photographers create an unclear border between real and imaginary. In general, the core landscape elements are maintained however it the image may appear like an alternate reality. A photography who has successfully created an impressionistic style landscape photograph has given viewer the impression of a landscape, rather than a real one.
Of all three styles, abstract strays the farthest from the true landscape. It is sometimes referred to as graphic style since it puts a much heavier emphasis on design than realness. To create the abstractness, photographers typically focus on a particular element. Things like color, form, composition all play a key role to creating the final impact. Some may also use extreme contrasts or under/over exposure to create the obscure image they are looking for.