Favourite Landscape Images

From time to time I enjoy going back through older photographs, like some of my favourite landscape images featured in this posting.  We get the opportunity to relive these creative moments. And, also remind ourselves of the creative process that led to the creation of the photographs.

NOTE: Click on images to enlarge.

Purakaunui Falls, Nikon 1 J5 + 1 Nikon 6.7-13mm, f/3.5-5.6mm @ 8mm, efov 21mm, f/8, 1/4, ISO-160

My wife and I absolutely love New Zealand. We’ve had the incredible good fortune to spend over 4 months driving throughout this magnificent country during our 5 visits beginning in 2004. The image of Purakaunui Falls above is one of the few times that I’ve used a tripod when photographing.

I can still vividly recall climbing down from the viewing platform and gingerly picking my way over wet, slippery rocks to get this shooting angle.

Te Anau, New Zealand, Nikon 1 J5 + 1 Nikon 10-100mm f/4-5.6 @ 13mm, efov 34mm, f/8, 1/100, ISO-800

As we travel our landscape images are the result of a ‘catch as catch can’ philosophy of photography.  We take each day as it comes and relish in each creative experience… responding as best we can given the weather and lighting. While most of our photographs are created between the hours of 9AM and 5PM while en route to our next destination, on some occasions we are able to shoot during the golden hour. The photograph above presented itself as as we strolled along the shoreline in Te Anau on the South Island of New Zealand.

Kaka Point, Nikon 1 J5 + 1 Nikon 10-100mm f/4-5.6 @ 10mm, efov 27mm, f/8, 1/1000, ISO-800

Some of our favourite landscape images are now impossible to recreate. The ravages of time, weather and the sea have permanently altered some shorelines, like this one at Kaka Point.

Nikon 1 J5 + 1 Nikon 10-100mm @ 10mm, efov 27mm, f/8, 1/50, ISO-400

The serenity of this lakeside image captured in Nova Scotia instills a feeling of total calm each and every time I view it. My only regret is that I didn’t have a GPS to record the exact location where this photograph was created.

Tairua, New Zealand, Nikon 1 J5 + 1 Nikkor 10-100 mm f/4-5.6 @ 26 mm, efov 70.2 mm, f/5.6, 1/320, ISO-160

The image above of the shoreline in Tairua New Zealand brings back many found memories. One of the best memories is of the warmth and hospitality of the local folks when my wife and I attended one of the Tairua Bowling Club’s weekly dinners.

Nikon 1 J5 + 1 Nikkor 10-100 mm f/4-5.6 @ 10 mm, efov 27 mm, f/8, 1/200, ISO-160

Another location that was inspiring and resulted in some of our favourite landscape images was Monument Valley Utah. We did a self-drive tour during our second visit which yielded more photographic opportunities.

Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland, New Zealand, Nikon 1 J5 + 1 Nikkor 10-100 mm f/4-5.6 @ 31.9 mm, efov 86.1 mm, f/5.6, 1/40, ISO-160

Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland has some spectacular landscape photographic opportunities. What made the image above memorable was the algae-filled water in the background.

Nikon 1 J5 + 1 Nikkor 10-100 mm f/4-5.6 @ 20 mm, efov 54 mm, f/8, 1/25, ISO-400

The gnarled branches in the photograph above give the scene a tortured and eerie feeling. This image was captured in Ireland not too far from Torc Falls.

Deirbhile’s Twist, Ireland, Nikon 1 J5 + 1 Nikkor 6.7-13 mm f/3.5-5.6 @ 6.7 mm, efov 18 mm, f/8, 1/320, ISO-160

Although created in recent times as an artistic work to commemorate the past, Deirbhile’s Twist in Ireland is a compelling photographic subject.

Glengarriff Blue Pool Walk Ireland, Nikon 1 J5 + 1 Nikkor 6.7-13 mm f/3.5-5.6 @ 7 mm, efov 18.9 mm, f/8, 1/80, ISO-160

The Glengarriff Blue Pool Walk in Ireland was a very relaxing and scenic experience. I often used a Nikon 1 J5 with a Nikon 1 6.7-13 mm f/3.5-5.6 wide angle zoom for landscape images. This small, light combination is terrific travel gear.

Nikon 1 J5 + 1 Nikkor 10-100 mm f/4-5.6 @ 10 mm, efov 27 mm, f/8, 1/800, ISO-400

Some of our favourite landscape images were captured at Keen Bay in Ireland. The drive was an interesting experience and the scenery was well worth the effort required to reach this location. I used a large rock as a corner anchor and a natural cut/stream in the scene as a leading line, drawing a viewer’s eye to the building in the distance. The zigzag topography in the background also adds some visual interest.

Eye of the Wind, Monument Valley, Panasonic DMC-FZ28, 5 mm, efov 27 mm, f/5.6, 1/250, ISO-100

The image above illustrates that we don’t need to have large sensor cameras to create landscape images. This scene of the Eye of the Wind in Monument Valley was captured using a tripod and a Panasonic FZ28 tiny sensor camera.

Nikon 1 J5 + 1 Nikon 10-100mm f/4-5.6 @ 27mm, efov 73mm, f/5.6, 1/1000 sec, ISO-160. Great Sand Dunes National Park, Colorado.

The Great Sand Dunes National Park in Colorado has some inspiring scenery. I used a couple of tourists sitting on some lawn chairs to add a sense of scale to this photograph.

En route to Glenorchy, New Zealand, Nikon 1 J5 + 1 Nikon 10-100mm f/4-5.6 @ 17mm, efov 46mm, f/5.6, 1/500, ISO-160

The drive to Glenorchy on the South Island of New Zealand can yield some great landscape photography opportunities. The weather can be very unpredictable in this area of the South Island., You can leave Queenstown under warm, sunny conditions and by the time you reach Glenorchy you may be greeted with windy, cool and rainy weather.

Nikon 1 J5 + 1 Nikon 10-100mm f/4-5.6 @ 10mm, efov 27mm, f/5.6, 1/400, ISO-400

When in New Zealand there are plenty of opportunities for landscape images of shoreline scenes. I always like to get in tight to a foreground element to accentuate a feeling of depth in these types of photographs.

Nikon 1 J5 + 1 Nikon 6.7-13 mm f/3.5-5.6 @ 6.7 mm, efov 18 mm, f/8, 1/400, ISO-160

When we were visiting Gemstone Beach in New Zealand we happened upon some shoes that another traveller had left on a rock ledge. I assume they were exploring along the surf line, and would return for their footwear.

Mangawhai Heads Beach, New Zealand, Nikon 1 V3 + 1 Nikkor 10-30 mm f/3.5-5.6 PD @ 20 mm, efov 54 mm, f/5.6, 1/800, ISO-160

This is one of my wife’s images that she captured at Mangawhai Heads Beach in New Zealand. I love the triangular foreground element with its blaze of red blossoms.

Olympus OM-D E-M1X + M.Zuiko 12-100 mm f/4 IS PRO @ 12 mm, f/8, 1/10, ISO-200

As I was reviewing a range of photographs for this article it occurred to me that I haven’t used my Olympus gear very often to create landscape images. Much of that was due to the effects of COVID-19 lockdowns and various travel restrictions. This image was captured at Grimsby Harbour in the early morning.

Nikon 1 V2 + Nikon 1 6.7-13mm f/3.5-5.6, 7mm, f/5.6, 1/200, ISO-160

Another of my favourite landscape images captured locally is the scene above, taken at Charles Daley Park. I wanted to create a feeling of being held captive by the weather and foliage.

Nikon 1 J5 + 1 Nikon 6.7-13mm f/3.5-5.6 @ 6.7mm, efov 18m, f/8, 1/320 sec, ISO-160. Bryce National Park, Utah.

There are a lot of wonderful landscape opportunities at Bryce National Park in Utah. Sometimes the challenge is to find a foreground element to anchor the composition and add a feeling of depth to the composition.

Nikon 1 J5 + 1 Nikon 10-100mm f/4-5.6 @ 14mm, efov 38mm, f/9, 1/500 sec, ISO-160

Sometimes a small clump of flowers in an otherwise barren landscape can serve as a good corner anchor in a landscape image. This photograph was captured in Badlands National Park in South Dakota.

Nikon 1 J5 + 1 Nikon 10-100mm f/4-5.6 @ 10mm, efov 27mm, f/8, 1/400, ISO-160

Te Onetapu, commonly called the Rangipo Desert, is a fascinating location to visit. It is a barren desert-like environment located on the North Island of New Zealand. This area actually receives quite a lot of rain. It is the poor soil quality, drying winds and the mass sterilization of seeds caused by a series of volcanic eruptions about 20,000 years ago that cause the desert-like environment.

Nelson – Tahunanui Beach, Nikon 1 J5 + 1 Nikon 10-100mm f/4-5.6 @ 10mm, efov 27mm, f/5.6, 1/640, ISO-160

Simplicity in a landscape/seascape image can sometimes add some emotional context to a photograph. This image of Tahunanui Beach always evokes feelings in me of being alone in nature… even though this location is a very short walk from the city of Nelson, New Zealand.

Due to circumstances created by COVID-19, much of my photographic work has focused on birds, flowers and insects over the few years. I thought it would be a nice change of pace to share some of my favourite landscape images.

Technical Note:

Photographs were captured mainly handheld using camera gear as noted in the EXIF data. Images were produced from RAW files using my standard approach in post.  Photographs were resized for web use. This is the 1,199 article published on this website since its original inception in 2015.

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