Shooting tips > Shoot Skyscapes

    Level: Beginner

    LESSON 6Shoot Skyscapes


    Focal length: 11 mm / F-number: 7.1 / Shutter speed: 1/30 sec.

    The sky shows us various faces every day. In this chapter, you will learn how to finish up your sky photograph as a "work of art" based on your own image. First, set the camera to the P-mode, and then follow these steps to get the photograph you want.

    Adjusting the color to reproduce it the way you want

    First, adjust the color according to your preferences with white balance. The effects of white balance differ depending on the time and the weather when shooting. Try each setting to find your favorite color.
    The following are photographs of a morning sky shot with 3 different white balance settings.



    While the photograph closest to the actual image is the one shot with [Daylight], selecting the [Shade] setting enhances the warmth of the sunlight. On the other hand, selecting the [Incandescent] setting adds a strong blue cast and creates a fantasy-like atmosphere.

    Enhancing image depth

    In addition to color adjustment, contrast and brightness also make a great difference in the atmosphere of a photograph. Contrast can be adjusted with Creative Style/Creative Look.
    For example, if you want to enhance the depth and instability of the sky by rendering the clouds clearly, as in photograph [1] below, [Landscape] is recommended. This setting enhances contrast and depth in the photograph. On the other hand, if you want to render a winter sky with a tranquil look, as in photograph [2], select the [Standard] setting and lower the values of "Saturation" and "Contrast" in the option settings.


    [1] [Landscape] [2] [Standard] Saturation: -2

    Last of all, try changing the brightness. The brightness can be adjusted with exposure compensation.
    In the example below, the exposure was adjusted to the - side to render the color more clearly and enhance the contrast. Because the appropriate level of exposure compensation will vary depending on the conditions of the sky and personal preference, take several shots with different levels.


    Exposure compensation: 0 Exposure compensation: -1

    Adjusting the exposure to the - side deepened the color of the sky, and finished up the photograph with enhanced depth.
    Conversely, adjusting to the + side is effective if you want a softer finish with lower contrast.

    Use these 3 functions - white balance, Creative Style/Creative Look, and exposure - to finish up your work the way you want.

    Trying circular polarizing filters

    If you use a circular polarizing filter, reflected light in the air can be screened out, so that the blue sky and green leaves can be rendered more vividly. It also suppresses reflections from the surface of water or glass.


    Without the filter With the filter


    This circular polarizing filter suppresses unwanted reflections off glass and water, giving your photographs a more professional look. It also features Carl Zeiss T* coating to reduce flares and ghosts.