We might be slightly biased, but Canada really does have the best summers. The beaches are basking in sun, patios are buzzing, campsites are aplenty, and lakes are prime for a dip. In Part 1 of our Summer Photography Tips series, our LDExperts in the Photolab are sharing their expertise for capturing the perfect photos lakeside. If you’re planning to visit Canada’s lake country this summer, make sure to check out these tips before you go, so you can capture even better summer photos!
Adjust Your Exposure
The number one issue when shooting in the middle of a sunny summer day is managing the brightness in your photos. Rather than shooting in Auto mode, our LDExperts recommend switching to Manual mode if you have it, and trying out some of the different exposure levels. If your camera has spot metering, even better. Using spot metering, you can essentially let your camera know which part of the image you want to be well exposed. If you notice your subjects are squinting due to the bright sunlight, face them away from the direct sun and simply meter on their face to ensure it’s well exposed. Of course, having your subject throw on a pair of sunglasses helps avoid the squinting issue entirely.
Be the Early Bird
If you’re taking your camera along to shoot iconic lakes like Moraine Lake or Lake Louise in Banff, being the early bird certainly means you’ll get the worm. The early start will ensure you capture the most pristine lake photos, unencumbered by tourists walking in and around your shot. Photographer Garrett Parker snapped this one of Moraine Lake at sunrise; look at how still that lake water is!
Use a Polarizing Filter
When shooting at the lake, where there is likely an ample amount of blue sky and blue water present in your photos, a polarizing filter will be extra handy. Essentially a polarizing filter filters out some of the light that is polarized, reducing reflections while also boosting contrasts. It will make those skies and lakes a deeper, richer hue. In a pinch and don’t have a polarizing filter? Try shooting through your polarized sunglasses!
Experiment with Reflections
Trees, mountains and structures can add a unique look to your photos in the form of reflections on the lake’s surface. James Wheeler snapped this shot in Field, BC with the canoe platform perfectly reflecting on the untouched lake.
Boats Make for Great Subjects
On a lake, boats make the best subjects. Whether they’re bobbing gently on the water, or racing across creating energetic waves, there’s lots of opportunities for unique boat shots. Depending on the lighting, you can experiment with reflections of the boat on the water, or even silhouettes like in the shot above.
Use Leading Lines
The viewer’s eye will be drawn to strong lines like a lake’s wharf, so try composing your shot around similar structures. Add a subject at the end of the wharf for added effect. A path leading to the lake or stepping stones would also make for compelling shots.
Shoot from Above
Have a drone in your photography arsenal? The lake is a perfect place to experiment with some unique aerial photos (within Transport Canada’s regulations, of course)! Just make sure you have enough battery power to get your drone out over the water and then back to shore before it runs out of juice.
Of course, great photos don’t deserve to just sit on your camera or phone – they deserve to be shared and displayed! Compile your favourite lakeside snapshots into a photo book, or take the best of the best and have them printed as a fine art prints, like an aluminum metal panel or enlargement. We also have all kinds of customizable novelties we can print your summer photos on – like a water bottle or even a beach blanket!
To get started, either download our London Drugs Photolab App for iOS and Android, or upload your photos to our Photolab website. If you’d like a little extra guidance from our LDExperts, come visit us in-store in the Photolab!