Camera settings for nature photography.
Learn more about the versatile medium of nature photography, plus camera tips for capturing epic shots on your next shoot.
From wildlife and flowers to deep canyons and rolling fields, the possibilities are nearly limitless when it comes to nature photography. It’s a wide-open niche that’s appealing to skilled photographers and beginners alike, but capturing those scenes can be challenging without the right camera settings.
Here are some best practices to keep in mind when shooting in nature.
Choose the right file type.
For nature photography, you’ll want to shoot in RAW mode as opposed to JPEG. While RAW files take up more space, shooting in JPEG can strip away valuable details in order to save space — details that you might want to have when you edit later.
Consider the light.
It may seem obvious, but try to be at the location when the light is best. This is especially important in landscape photography, and will help ensure that you’re not working too hard against the elements.
You’ll also want to familiarize yourself with the exposure triangle (ISO, shutter speed, and aperture). While there is no one perfect setting for nature photography, understanding the basics will allow you to adjust each of those elements depending on the type of shot you want.
Understand shutter speed.
When you’re in the wild, capturing photos of animals can be a thrilling experience — but you’ll have to act fast. Be comfortable with shooting at high shutter speeds in order to avoid camera shake and capture your subject in time.
Play with depth of field.
Plants and flowers are great subjects to work with, as they’re much more patient than animals. They also make for a perfect opportunity to try out macrophotography. Make sure to bring a tripod so you can avoid camera shake when using longer exposures and smaller apertures.
Discover even more photography tips and techniques to try.