Lockdown Landscapes

So what sort of photography can we enjoy during lockdown? Well, what about a session of lockdown landscapes for at start?

Many of the things we photographers enjoy have been taken away from us this year. By any estimation, 2020 has been a pretty awful one for most of us. Camera clubs have closed their doors, portrait sessions made all but impossible, group photography workshops cancelled, one-to-one tuition has moved online, the list of woes is a long one.

Nothing to stop you taking pictures

But wait a minute, just think, we are actually the lucky ones – we are still here, still alive and still kicking. We can get outdoors for our exercise, and nothing is stopping us taking a camera with us. Nothing is stopping us taking pictures. You can social distance to your heart’s content if you wish.

lockdown landscapes shropshire
Lockdown landscapes taken after the passage of a cold front can capture spectacular light as the clouds leave dark shadows over the entire landscape – and it will change every second. This simple shot shows the view of The Lawley from Caradoc in the Shropshire Hills. Photograph by Philip Dunn

 

I realise that not everyone is lucky enough to have beautiful scenery on their doorstep. However, most of us can get to some open ground or a public park even if we live in the centre of town. You have to get out to get some exercise anyway – so take your camera with you and use it. Don’t worry about tripods and a whole lot of camera gear. Just take one camera and one lens and capture what you see.

Remember that landscape does not have to be of beautiful places to be worth photographing. Some of my most successful images when working for The Sunday Times travel pages were taken in quite desolate, even derelict open spaces.

What about the weather?

What about the weather? Well, we are stuck with what we get, but don’t let a bit of rain put you off. Some great atmospheric lockdown landscapes can be captured in the rain. Just make sure you and your camera are kept dry and get on with it. Do make a special point of going out with your camera after the passage of a cold front – watch that weather forecast.

Reflections in lockdown landscape of Shropshire
Small dramatic clouds and s deep blue sky reflected in a pool on the heights of Caradoc in the Shropshire Hills. Photograph by Philip Dunn

 

A cold front is just that – a band of cold air , often bringing heavy rain and colder weather. But behind that cold front is photographer’s magic; crystal clear air, often with scattered dark clouds bringing short, sharp showers out of a bright blue sky. In fact, wonderful conditions for lockdown landscape photography. Those scattered puffy clouds leave fabulous, enlivening shadows across the whole landscape.

stoke-on-trent for sunday times black and white
Okay – it’s not a landscape, but if you can’t get out of town just open up your eyes to what is around you. You’ve got to get out and exercise anyway – so take your camera with you. Stoke-on-Trent. Photograph by Philip Dunn for The Sunday Times

Start enjoy your lockdown landscapes

So, don’t let lockdown get you down – get out with your camera and give creative purpose to your daily exercise walks.

The pictures on this page – and lots more not posted – were taken during one vigorous afternoon walk in the Shropshire Hills. I enjoyed avery minute of my walk, but the pleasure was at least doubled by the satisfaction of capturing photographs of the wonderful world around me.

Find out about online photography lessons with Philip Dunn

 

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