One of the most important things you can do for the growth of your photography is to always be ambitious about learning new things. There isn’t a single photographer out there who don’t have room to grow his skill as a photographer or artist. I personally do this by digesting all the information I can. I constantly stay up to date on gear and new processing techniques, but for my next two articles, I would like to share a tidbit that I believe is one of the most important for learning – look at as many images as you can from talented photographers.
I constantly seek out inspirational photos from talented photographers, whether it be on social media or personal websites. When I see a great image, I focus on why it makes such an impact and try to break it down – why does the composition work so well, what do I think the photographer did in terms of processing, what color palette was used, etc. I take all those things and try to apply them to my own photography. Hence, I spend a lot of time sifting through images. I encourage all of you out there to look at some images each day and think about what makes them so great. I have provided a list of 10 landscape photographers that I suggest following. All have unique compositions, are extremely creative, and produce fantastic images. I plan to compile a list of wildlife photographers for next week so you wildlife specialists, stay tuned!
Landscape Photographers to Follow
Marc is my personal favorite landscape photographer of all time. He is a true artist and innovator. He was the first to shoot many of the locations out west that we now see as ‘iconic’. Marc continues to push the boundaries, with trips to remote areas of Patagonia, Alaska, the Yukon, British Columbia, and the Northwest Territories. He is a master of composition and a must follow, in my opinion.
Bio: Marc Adamus is a landscape photographer based in Western North America. Marc’s pursuit of landscape images has taken him around the world almost continuously for well over a decade now. The visual drama and artistry of his photographs are born of a keen eye for the many moods of Nature and a life-long passion for the wilderness. This passion shines throughout Marc’s work and has attracted a wide audience around the world.
Marc’s style is unmistakable. His talent for rare captures of amazing light and fleeting atmosphere imbue his portfolio with a sense of the epic, majestic and the bold. His success derives from the patient single-minded pursuit of all the unique moments that generate the magic and energy of the wilderness, often spending weeks or even months immersing himself in the landscape he shoots despite the rigors of season and weather.
Follow: Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/marcadamus/ or Website – https://marcadamus.com
Max Rive is another incredible innovator and artist. He became known for his incredible compositions that displayed an insane field of view. He has some of the best panoramic images of any photographer ever. This list is not in any particular order, but I really respect Marc and Max’s work because they are dedicated to creating new images…they do not copy other peoples shots or compositions.
Bio: Max Rive started taking photos in 2008 and became much more serious about his craft in 2013. He exploded on the scene soon after and continues to produce awe-inspiring work. He is well-known for his incredible panoramic images, unique compositions, and his quest for adventure. He is a true artist in every sense and continues to push the boundaries of landscape and adventure photography. He has received international acclaim and is considered to be one of the best landscape photographers of our time.
Follow: Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/maxrivephotography/ or Website –https://www.maxrivephotography.com/
Daniel Kordan is the best travel landscape photographer out there. He is on the road every waking minute and I always love his fresh perspectives on areas. He goes on many expeditions throughout the year and is responsible for photographing some areas that are hardly touched by photographers or tourists.
Bio: Daniel Kordan has been fascinated by the possibilities of photography since his early childhood. He grew up at a beautiful lake region under Moscow exploring wild nature, spending most of his free time in nature. Nature is his inspiration, with all the beauty and variety of colors and compositions. Daniel has several awards in photography: Golden Turtle’ 13 Nature nomination winner, National Geographic Russia contest 2013 winner, Best of Russia’13, ’14 ’15 winner, best photographer’13, Trierenberg Super Circuit award (best landscape photographer). His key clients are Apple, Gazprom Neft’, S7 Airlines, RedBull.
Follow: Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/danielkordan/ or Website – https://danielkordan.com
Derek Sturman is a fantastic landscape and astrophotographer based in the southwest. Derek has great work from across the US. In particular, he has some absolutely stunning night photography. He is an innovative astrophotographer and his techniques in the field are just as impressive as his post-processing.
Bio: I began photographing the Night sky in mid-July of 2015, marking the beginning of my journey in landscape photography. Since then I have been photographing landscapes all over the American West.
My images are captured using a Nikon D850 Digital SLR camera and processed using various programs including Adobe Lightroom and Adobe Photoshop. Many would consider me a digital artist, as many of my images have artistic interpretations and adjustments made to them. I’ve found photography to be a constant quest to replicate the emotion or feeling of a moment or place using only visual stimulation. For this reason, many images are modified above the cameras capability to capture, to better express the moment experienced in each.
Follow: Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/dereksturmanphotography/ or Website – https://sturmanphoto.smugmug.com/
Ryan Dyar is the ultimate dark, moody, and dramatic photographer. He has a knack for capturing that perfect light that gives an image that spooky feeling. He is a Pacific Northwest-based photographer and has some of the best images from that region – especially Mount Rainier and Glacier National Park.
Bio: My path to photography was as organic as most people’s. I received a camera as a gift and took it along on my travels at a time in my life that I felt a bit lost. The ensuing interest in creating images gave me the direction in my life that I was lacking. Now it’s over a decade later and photography has not only become my career but what my existence revolves around… for better or worse. A camera led me to meet my wife, some of my best friends and also discovering this one true passion in life that has guided me toward being a better human. My idea of creating imagery seems to be constantly changing with the times and I take artistic liberties with the process of making my own style of art… which might not be for everyone. Whether you like my work or not, thanks for taking the time to check it out. Cheers!
Follow: Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/ryandyar/ or Website – https://www.ryandyar.com/
Guy Tal’s work defines the ‘art of seeing’. He only photographs scenes that he has a strong connection with and his style is one of a kind. His work is masterful and powerful. He shoots a lot of long lens stuff, but it is put together so well. His eye for composition and his subtle processing make him a must follow. He is also a talented writer and advocate for the precious places he photographs.
Bio: I do not consider myself a photographer who creates art, but rather an artist working in the medium of photography. In photography, I strive to create images that speak to wildness – the quality of being attuned to and inspired by, the wild. I consider my work to be expressive art, in the sense that its primary purpose is to offer visual metaphors for thoughts and feelings, rather than to document appearances. I work primarily in the landscape of my home, the high deserts of the Colorado Plateau. Over a period now spanning more than two decades, these places have become very meaningful to me; and my relationship with some of them have become as complex as any I have had with another human being. Rather than glimpses of the superficial beauty of the land, I wish instead for my work to speak to a deep familiarity with my subjects, revealing something of my reverence for them and the roles they play in my life. The things I photograph are not just attractive models to me; they are also temples and sanctuaries and multi-dimensional characters in my own story, as I am (surely to a lesser degree) in theirs.
Follow: Website – https://guytal.com/
Erin Babnik is known for her adventurous photography and masterful processing. She has photographed unique scenes from Death Valley to the Dolomites, and she continues to explore. I really like the way Erin processes her images. Her images are super clean, the color is perfect, and she doesn’t go overboard.
Bio: Erin Babnik is known internationally as a leading photographic artist, educator, writer, and speaker. Her ambitious and expressive style of landscape photography brings together an unusual integration of adventurous exploration, progressive techniques, and formal education in the arts. In her writing and public speaking, Erin explores topics with a unique blend of art historical, philosophical, and instructional ideas, an approach that has made her one of the most notable voices among the current generation of landscape photographers.
Follow: Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/erinbabnikphotography/ or Website – https://erinbabnik.com/
William is one of my favorite photographers on this list. He is a great all-around person and the best photographer from New Zealand (originally from Australia). A reoccurring theme for this list, but William is an avid explorer and photographs a lot of remote, unique landscapes across the world. His stuff from New Zealand really blows me away. Fun fact: William hardly uses a tripod and relies on the in-body stabilization in his camera.
Bio: First and foremost I’m a husband and father, based out of the mountainside town of Te Anau, in the South Island of New Zealand. Originally from Wollongong Australia, in 2012 photography came into my life and completely changed the way I view the world. I’ve since fallen in love with this art and traversed the globe, pursuing rare and elusive moments of atmosphere and light. Since late 2014, I have been working full time as a landscape photographer, hosting my own photography workshops and guiding tours the world over, as well as shooting for various brands and clients. Over the years I’ve developed a love and appreciation for the wilderness and the natural environment, something I took for granted most of my life. Through my work, I don’t strive to make ‘pretty’ or popular photos, but attempt to capture and convey the thoughts and emotions that I experience outdoors and through life in general. It’s here that I find my inspiration and hope in an endless pursuit of trying to capture the overwhelming sights, sounds and sublime presence that is found outdoors.
Follow: Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/williampatino_photography/ or Website – https://williampatino.com/
Sarah Marino’s eye for the subtle scenes is one of the best. Now pair that with her processing style rich in the use of pastel colors, and wow! Sarah is one of my favorite small scene photographers. It is a style of photography that I am not very good at, so I always try to learn from her images.
Bio: Sarah Marino is a nature photographer based in rural southwestern Colorado. Sarah is a full-time photographer, photography educator, and writer. With her husband, she travels extensively around the United States and beyond. In addition to photographing grand landscapes, Sarah is best known for photographs of a diverse range of smaller subjects including intimate landscapes, abstract renditions of natural subjects, and creative portraits of plants and trees.
Follow: Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/sarahmarinophoto/ or Website – https://www.naturephotoguides.com/
David Thompson’s style is so smooth. He has amazing, unique compositions from heavily shot locations, as well as many remote locations that he discovered on his own. I love David’s style. He is a master of the grand landscape, but also of the small scenes. His recent drone work is some of the best out there as well. His processing is perfect, lots of vibrant colors and crisp detail.
Bio: I currently live in Las Vegas, Nevada, with easy access to some of the most beautiful locations in the South West region of the United States. The best way to describe myself is, I’m an ordinary guy that enjoys photography and loves the outdoors. I have been this way since I was a child. Having lived in the southwest for the majority of my life I came to appreciate the outdoors at an early age. Growing up in New Mexico, my parents would take me on fishing and camping trips to nearby lakes. Being that we lived so close to White Sands National Monument, day trips on the weekend were frequent. They would let me run around the dunes and explore. I would climb to the top of the dunes in triumph, thinking I achieved a major accomplishment. Once I was at the top of the dunes, I would just gaze at the amazing vista. With age, I grew more intrigued with the outdoors and landscape photography. As my eyes opened to this beautiful world and with a camera in my hand, my appreciation has become a deep passion of mine expressed through my photography. My goal as a landscape photographer is to capture an intimate moment and bring the viewer into the scene as if they were standing right beside me. I want to tell a visual story and let your mind journey the world’s natural beauty through my images.
Follow: Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/davidthompsonphotography/ or Website – https://www.davidthompsonphotography.com/
Matt Meisenheimer is a photographer based in Wisconsin. His artistry revolves around finding unique compositions and exploring locations that few have seen. He strives to capture those brief moments of dramatic light and weather, which make our grand landscapes so special. Matt loves the process of photography – from planning trips and scouting locations, taking the shot in-field, to post-processing the final image. Matt is an active adventurer and wildlife enthusiast as well. He graduated with a degree in wildlife ecology and worked in Denali National Park and Mount Rainier National Park as a biologist. He also spent 6 months working in the deserts of Namibia before finding his path in photography. Matt’s passion for the wilderness has taken him to many beautiful places around the world. As a former university teaching assistant, Matt is passionate about instruction. It is his goal to give his students the technical and creative knowledge they need to achieve their own photographic vision. He truly enjoys working with photographers on a personal level and helping them reach their goals. You can see Matt’s work and portfolio on his webpage at www.meisphotography.com
Don’t Miss the Next Session of BCJ “Live”
Backyard Bird Photography: Simple Techniques for Wildlife Close to Home
with Russell Graves
Tuesday, March 9th, 2021 at 11 am (Mountain)