Landscape Photography – A Sense of Scale

Have you ever photographed a deep forest, a huge lake or an enormous mountain range and when you looked at your images later they just didn’t seem as “big” as you remember? This happens a lot in landscape photography since the camera itself has no way to record a sense of scale. Its up to you as the photographer to create this sense of scale, which is why many professionals prefer to shoot landscape and travel images that include people.

Take the image below for example. This field of wildflowers covered several acres of land and stretched almost as far as the eye could see. Without the people in the image, the sense of scale would have been lost.


Copyright © 2009 Jeff Lynch Photography
Shot taken with a Canon EOS 40D set on aperture priority (Av) using an EF-S 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5 USM tripod mounted. The exposure was taken at 22mm, f/9.5 for 1/60th of a second at ISO 100 on Sandisk Extreme III digital film. Post capture processing was done in Lightroom 2 and Photoshop Elements using Nik Software’s Color Efex Pro filters. Click on the image above for a larger version.

4 thoughts on “Landscape Photography – A Sense of Scale

  1. This shot certainly works with or without the people. Of course, one could certainly argue that the human figures accent the scene – you know to make it more interesting. That dash of red is nice.

    • Thanks Michael,

      I looked over this shot for over 30 minutes before deciding that the only way to show the scale of this field of wildflowers was to add some people.


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