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Photographing Fall Foliage

Soon, there will be cooler temperatures here in the DC area, bringing with it, fall foliage which only lasts for a few weeks, so take advantage of every opportunity to photograph those brilliant fall colors!

Here are some ideas for photographing the fall foliage:

Red Leaf in the rain

Rain produces wonderful reflections and color saturation! You may need to use a Circular Polarizing filter to reduce glare and enhance color.

Maple Leaves with dew

Early Morning Dew and Frost will define the fall foliage in beautiful ways, enhancing colors and lines. Again, you may need to use a Circular Polarizing filter to reduce glare and enhance color.

Red Maple in the fog

Mist & Fog can create stunning, etherial, “other-worldly” images. You may need to manually focus as well as adjust the exposure to compensate the camera not being able to focus or calculate the proper exposure due to the mist or fog.

Fall Foliage Gunston Hall

Overcast days can provide great saturation of color, without glare or harsh shadows, just like when photographing flowers. Compose your image to eliminate the overcast sky.

Fall along the C&O Canal - Anglers

If you are fortunate to have a beautiful sunny fall day, use the sun to enhance the fall foliage. Photograph the foliage backlit with the sun. Underexpose the image by 1/3 stop to enhance the color.

Fall Foliage Tidal Basin

On a windy day, use a slow shutter speed and let the wind create the movement in your photo, for an impressionistic image. If you cannot get a slow enough shutter speed, use a neutral density filter.

Learn how to photograph fall foliage on a WPS safari – sign up for Cherry Blossoms in the Fall on November 5 & 12!

Photos by Sherryl Belinsky

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