When I am out shooting landscapes I am always looking for that "Long Shot" and what I mean by that is, that I am looking for a compressed shot that may be way off in the distance. I carry a 100-400 C series Sigma lens, I use to have a ƒ2.8 70-200 Nikkor lens, but decided to move towards Sigma. I always come across something that is happening off in the distance and I always want to be able to capture it and that's where my telephoto lens comes in handy.
When you are on a high vantage point in a mountain covered landscape like here in the Blue Ridge Mountains, you come across a lot of great compressed shots. The light might not be working well for a nice wide angle shot, but off in the distance the light is looking great along a mountain top or down in the valley. This is where I seem to find a lot of my great compressed shots. I am always looking for a stray bit of light, layers that build or a combination of both working harmoniously together.
Shooting tight, compressed shots with your telephoto lens can be tricky though, so here are a few tips for shooting with a telephoto lens. The first thing you really need to know is that you need your shutter speed to be faster than your focal length, for example: with a 50mm lens your shutter speed would be 1/50th sec or faster. This will make sure your photos are sharp and not blurry, however you may have to sacrifice some ISO, but with today's cameras that's really not a big issue at all. Another factor you want to consider is having the right lens, some lenses can distort an image and create some really bad chromatic aberration, which leave a colored outline along some details. You really just need to research the right lens for the type of camera you are using. My last tip would be to consider a telephoto lens tripod mount, you will also have to have a fairly sturdy tripod. This will reduce vibration and help you get a clearer and sharper shot.
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