How to Get Awesome Photos of Fall Colors - Beginner’s Guide

September 29, 2022  •  Leave a Comment

Fall is a great time to practice and learn the benefits of using manual mode over any of the automatic modes.

Manual mode can be intimidating and you may think you aren’t ready for manual mode.  However, it is time to practice if you are thinking about taking that leap.  The only automatic mode to use is auto focus

The colors of Fall make great photos and that is a great subject to practice your manual mode skills or to get started learning manual mode.

Why are Fall photos a great time to practice?  I am glad you asked, so here you go.

Landscapes are patient
Landscapes won’t ask if you are done yet
Landscapes don’t need breaks
Landscapes don’t complain
Landscapes are always on time
Landscapes will let you take as many photos as you want
Landscapes love it when you share their photos

Of course, understanding the exposure triangle is important.  I have a video you can watch where I give an overview of the exposure triangle.

For this exercise in learning, play with all the settings.  But if you want a majority of the scene in focus you should strive for a high aperture setting.  If you get around F11 you will likely be happy with the depth of focus.

Here are some practice tips.

  1. Jump right in to manual mode and adjust as needed
  2. Use Auto for your first shot and look at the settings the camera chose and use that as a starting point
  3. Use Aperture Priority (still a form of auto) so you can control the aperture.  Start around F11
  4. Lens suggestions
    1. Use the lenses that you have.
    2. Don’t just use a wide shot.  Most cameras come with an 18-35 kit lens.
    3. Whether it is a kit lens or a 70-200, play with a lot of compositions along that range to come up with different compositions.
  5. Pay attention to the sun
    1. Sunrise and Sunset will give the best lighting for fall colors
    2. Try shots with the sun behind you
    3. Try shots with the sun in front of you
    4. Heck try with the sun from any angle

Okay, enough reading or watching YouTube - get out there and practice.  Share your photos with me by commenting with a link to your photos.

Oxbow Fall PhotoOxbow Fall PhotoOxbow Fall Photo


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