Backyard Landscape Photography: Learning from my mistakes

Backyard Landscape Photography is a great way to get prepared for the big trip.  Most of us, me included, are dreaming of far and distant lands where the pictures taken would be magnificent.  Capturing the Eiffel tower in the rising sun, Big Ben at sunset and why not Angkor Wat, Cambodia in golden light.  Are we ready?

I decided on a Saturday afternoon that it was time for me to know how ready I am.  Can I take great pictures in my home town?  Where I know the streets, traffic and where I am commuting every day? I decide to spare the flight, hotel and all related expenses to find out if this is as easy as it seems.

Backyard Landscape Photography – Preparing for the perfect morning

So, I had a plan for a great sunrise.  Weather was perfect; I knew the place for being there at least 5 times.  I knew the exact timing needed to drive + walk to the appropriate spot.  I did prepare my bag the day before making sure I had everything with me.  This was looking so good.

I woke up 30 minutes in advances, took a coffee and here I go.  Along the 90 minutes’ drive I stopped once for a another coffee.  Since I was also testing my new camera bag, I did load it more than needed.  I wanted to know at the same time if it would balance well with 30 pounds in it.  Well I reached my location 15 minutes late.

Climbing this rather small hill was quite tougher than expected.  The usual one hour ascending walk looked more like 2 hours.  I soon realized that I would not reach my destination on time so I stop mid-way looking to what appear the east side and set-up the tripod waiting in awe for the perfect light of the sunrise.

Learning from my mistakes

Time was ticking and I was surprised to see that the sky was timid to say the least.  Looking over my left shoulder, I realized that I was facing south.  The sky was literally in fire when looking eastbound.  I took the tripod and run on the other side and… it was too late.  The color was already fading away.

This is my spot.  I went there at sunrise and sunset at least 5 times.  An overload backpack and a few minutes taken at the coffee shop along the way was all that was needed to screw things up.

So can I land in London and get Big Ben from the best spot under great light as easy as that?  Well, it is probably a dream, at least for me.  Nothing prevent me to try it out though.

[bctt tweet=”Avoid Mistakes on your next Trip – Try Backyard #Landscape #Photography”]

Since my recent trip uphill did not produce the expected result, this is what I am offering you today.  This is a backyard landscape picture of my home town.  The Port of Montreal seen from Charron Island across the St-Lawrence River.  A panorama of 6 pictures taken at 135mm on a 70-200mm f2.8L IS II with my 5D3 while the sun is rising in my back.

2012-06-09-00012Wikipedia: The Port of Montreal is one of the largest inland ports in the world,[1] it is the second busiest port in Canada (after Vancouver), and it is one of the busiest ports in North America. It is also the entry point to other major cities such as Toronto, Detroit and Cleveland. It handles 26,000,000  tonnes (28,660,094 short tons; 25,589,370 long tons) of cargo annually.[2] It remains a trans-shipment point for grain, sugar, petroleum products, machinery, and consumer goods. For this reason, Montreal is also the railway hub of Canada.

There is tremendous photo opportunities just a few miles away.  Should you fail on the first try, your hotel bill will not kill you.  Do you have any story to tell on the topic?  I would love to know