In mid-winter, we traveled down the interminable Pipiriki Road to the muddy Whanganui River. On the return trip, we arrived back at the road saddle, where this stunning landscape presented itself. Mount Ruapehu (2,797m) is the highest hill in the North Island, presiding over the bush and farmland that encircles it.
Firstly, I pointed my wide-angle lens at the scene - the obvious choice for landscapes - set at a focal length of 32mm. While the composition is quite aesthetically pleasing, much of the frame is full of dark shadows, and the primary subject matter - the volcano - is not prominent.
The solution? I fitted a 70-200mm telezoom lens onto the camera. This has compressed the perspective, giving the illusion that the rolling green hills in the foreground are quite near to Mount Ruapehu. In Maori, it means the exploding pit. This snow-crusted monolith of glaciers, craters and towering peaks is now dominant, obviously the main subject of my photograph. (See below).
The composition still appears balanced, albeit in a more symmetrical way. The most essential 'rule' for landscape photos is to always have a foreground and a background, to create the illusion of depth. In this image, the foreground and background contrast beautifully, with strikingly different colour schemes.
Camera Settings: Canon EOS 5D MkIII | f/11 | 1/8 sec | ISO 100 | Focal length: 90mm
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Keywords: landscape photography north island nz, new zealand landscape photography, wilderness, ruapehu, tongariro, volcano, mountain, national park, nz, south island nz,