Landscape Photograph — Sunset in Paradise - dummies

By Doug Sahlin

This landscape photo was taken in Caspersen Beach in Venice, Florida. This picture was photographed in winter. Winter in Florida is a tough job, but somebody’s got to do it.


Camera settings

  • ISO setting 100: There was plenty of light, so the photographer went with a low ISO setting.

  • Exposure compensation –1/3 EV: Underexposing sunsets slightly enhances their colors.

  • Focal length 17mm: A wide-angle focal length was used to capture the lovely expanse of beach and the clouds.

  • Aperture f/10: This aperture yields a large depth of field when used with a wide-angle focal length.

  • Shutter speed 1/40 of a second: This shutter speed was more than fast enough to handhold the camera with this focal length and still get a blur-free image.

Composing the image

This image was photographed with an extreme wide-angle lens that is the 35mm equivalent of 17mm. A polarizing filter was also used to enhance the clouds and make the sky darker. The photographer surveyed the scene and crouched low to include some big rocks in the foreground. A large object gives the viewer a visual anchor, which is especially important when you take pictures with a super wide-angle lens.

The horizon was placed toward the bottom of the image to draw the viewers’ attention to the sky. A fisherman was also included in the picture for a sense of distance and scale.

Post processing

The saturation was increased to make the colors pop and minimal cropping was done to tighten the composition of the image.