Capturing a selfie with your friends while hiking Angels Landing or capturing a frame-worthy picture of the red rock desert is likely high on your list of digital souvenirs you want to take home from your next visit to Southern Utah.

While getting a shot of a Bighorn Sheep or even a California Condor is exciting, there’s no shortage of stunning landscapes to capture during your visit.

You’re going to want to capture some of those landscapes to share with friends and family back home and create lasting memories of an incredible trip. That’s why we’ve compiled a list of landscape photography tips to help you do just that.

Skip the Mid-day Photo Shoot

Even the best photographers will struggle to take perfect, crisp photos when the sun is high and bright overhead. Harsh sunlight will wash out your photo’s colors and obscure the details, ruining your shot.

Unless you’re using a DSLR camera or one with settings for bright natural light, aim to get your shots in early or late in the day, when the sun is less harsh. The “Golden Hour,” a term used to describe the yellow light that floods the air as the sun goes down, is one of the best times to take landscape photos or any photos for that matter. The stunning color makes for dreamy atmospheres, while the dimmer light will help bring out details in your photos. As soon as you notice the light beginning to change, start snapping; the more light you lose, the harder it will be to take clear photos, particularly if you’re using a smartphone.

If you’re using a good camera and are familiar with setting your shutter and adjusting your exposure, you can continue taking photos as the Golden Hour turns into the Blue Hour. This is another great time for taking unique, dramatic shots. 

Don’t Worry About Getting the “Perfect” Shot

If thinking of landscape photos brings to mind only perfectly framed mountain views or a snap of a cascading waterfall, it’s time to widen your horizons.

One of the best ways to capture landscape photos that you’ll cherish is to always be ready to start shooting away. Sometimes it’s the view that you didn’t think of that winds up looking like artwork in your lens. An interesting pattern in the rocks, a desert cactus, or lines in a sand dune can all make for interesting, beautiful shots. Always being ready to start taking pictures, rather than waiting for the ‘perfect’ view will ensure you never miss a shot.

Understand Your Camera’s Settings

Many modern cameras come equipped with settings designed for taking landscape photos. These settings may do things like widen your camera’s field of view or adjusting your shutter for a longer exposure. If you aren’t comfortable adjusting your camera’s settings on your own, it’s best to switch over to this setting when you’re ready to take a shot.

Just because you aren’t shooting with a DSLR camera doesn’t mean you won’t have a landscape setting at your disposal. Many smartphones now feature camera settings that you can use to level up your photography game. If your phone doesn’t have a landscape setting, you can also take advantage of apps designed to help you take better photos. Besides adjusting your phone’s camera, these apps also help guide you through framing your photo and getting enough light.

Play with your camera or smartphone’s settings before your trip so that you’ll be ready when you see a landscape shot that you want to capture.

Capturing Some Stunning Landscape Shots During Your Next Visit to Southern Utah

The photos you’ve taken yourself are some of the best souvenirs that you can take home with you from your visit to Southern Utah. While wildlife photos are a popular digital souvenir, don’t forget to look out for stunning landscapes that you’d like to capture as well. In fact, you’ll find some incredible views of these landscapes right from your vacation rental and private patio. Keep these tips in mind, and you’ll come home with photos you’ll love to share and display, and reflect back on for years to come.

If you’re eager to put your photography skills to the test, it’s time to book your next visit. Fall is a particularly great time to visit the region, as the bright colors of the changing trees make the landscape come alive. Book your stay today to guarantee your spot this fall!