"Tell me and I forget.
Teach me and I remember.
Involve me and I learn."

~ benjamin Franklin


He is one of the best educators I have ever worked with, regardless of discipline…I will come back in a heartbeat, to take other workshops at the gallery that Mr Banks is conducting.”

~ Mr R Fosler, Massachusetts, USA


"I just wanted to thank you once again for the Robin Hood’s Bay course last week. I thoroughly enjoyed it, but more than that I left with a far greater confidence in my compositional abilities, and a decent basic knowledge of Lightroom. The location, accommodation and organisation were first rate, and your maxim of always considering the composition and only later considering whether you could pull it off resounded."

~ Mr N Farrimond, UK

Welcome to the 4th part of my Practical Photography tutorials - Time (or Lack of it).

Landscape Photography Tutorials by Mark Banks

Time (or lack of it)

For most people, landscape photography is a hobby, a way to relax and get away from the usual hussle and bustle of daily life and stress. We would all like to do more photography but time always seems to be our enemy. Yet if you give yourself extra time it is likely you will notice an improvement in your compositional skills.

Allow more time

Allowing a little more time to reach your chosen location can pay dividends. From bitter experience, rushing there leads to a poorly thought out composition or a forgotten technical step when making the image. For the exact reasons mentioned in the ‘Composition’ section, rushing to a location will not help you connect with the landscape and to ‘tune in’ to your environment first.


When restricted for time, setting yourself a project can be a great way of motivating yourself to get out into the landscape. It can also help focus your mind on one part of your photography, which should help with your creativity overall. It can also give you a great sense of pride and achievement if you follow it up with an exhibition or a book for instance.

Weather - use it to your advantage

It can be very difficult to motivate yourself to go out if it happens to be raining or blowing a gale but you can pretty much take pictures in whatever weather so long as you are adequately prepared. If it’s raining take an umbrella - it’s not easy I grant you but the rewards are much greater if you return with a wonderful image knowing how much more difficult it was to achieve. 

By adjusting your photography to the conditions your photography will be wide-ranging and improve overall. When it’s sunny and the light is harsh consider making a black and white image as this genre suits these conditions. If it’s raining consider finding a woodland as soft light can enhance the mood and feel of an image (it’s likely you’ll be more sheltered, too). If it’s windy consider long exposure photography (a sturdy tripod is essential though) as this can emphasise the movement of clouds in an image. Wind can also emphasise movement in grasses and anything else that is moved by the wind.

These are just a few ways of using the weather to your advantage. By using it creatively you’re more likely to make more successful images more often.

Expect to not take a picture!

This is one of the most difficult things to pull off - particularly for those new to landscape photography. Sometimes there just isn’t a picture to be taken. It might be that you’re just not in the right state of mind. It might be that when you arrive at your destination the light just isn’t working how you’d like it. Whatever the reason have the courage to accept that sometimes it’s not going to be your day and be brave enough to walk away. Otherwise, you’ll simply be left with a lot of mediocre images on your hard drive, which you will likely delete at some point in the future anyway. At least you had a nice walk and remember that when conditions are right it makes it all the sweeter!

Learn more

If you've enjoyed reading Mark's tutorials and would like to learn more why not consider a one day practical or post-production workshop on a one-to-one basis with Mark. Alternatively, Mark runs several group workshops every year in some of the most beautiful places in the UK. Take a look on the 'Tuition' page for a full list of workshops currently available or contact Mark by e-mail - for available dates.