No Reason to Travel Just Yet: Here Are Five Reasons to Photograph Locally

A thing I have learned from doing a lot of travel landscape photography is the value of photographing the local environment. Here, I present five reasons to go out and photograph the local landscapes and nature.

In my new video, I go for a walk in my local forest and present five reasons why you should photograph your local landscape. One reason I emphasize is your ability to get to know your local landscape very intimately. You have much more time to explore, photograph, evaluate, and re-shoot a specific scene and composition. On top of that, you get to choose what conditions in which you want to photograph the scene, as you can just wait for different or optimal weather. Throughout the year, I have really enjoyed returning to the same scenes from summer, through autumn, to winter. We have yet to get some snow and frost, but I know exactly where to go when those conditions happen. You also get to compare the scene throughout the year and might experience some unforeseen revelations. In my case, I found many of my favorite forest compositions to work the best with green leaves instead of autumn colors, something that surprised me quite a lot.

Another reason to photograph the local landscape is economical. Besides it being physically easier, your wallet might also thank you for not dealing with flights, accommodation, and rentals. It is a big expense you can cut away. There is a big chance it is easier to sell prints of your local landscape to the local population. Not many people outside of the landscape photography community care about an epic photo of a mountain and waterfall in Iceland surrounded by northern lights. They would much rather have a photo of something they can relate to.

Check out the video above. Maybe you know of more reasons to photograph the local landscapes; let me hear your thoughts below.

Mads Peter Iversen's picture

Danish Fine Art Landscape Photographer and YouTuber. He is taking photos all over the world but the main focus is the cold, rough, northern part of Europe. His style is somewhere in between dramatic and colorful fantasy and Scandinavian minimalism. Be sure to check out his YouTube channel for epic landscape photography videos from around the world.

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No reason to travel just yet? Why not? People, travel as soon as you can and as much as you can. Travel is second only to education. If you are doing it for photography, nothing will get you more inspired than new places, new faces, and different cultures.

I live in probably the most boring part of my country. Everything is flat, urbanised, over populated. I travel to get away from all of this.

Where do you live? I'm sure you can find something. But, for what I want to shoot, I almost do have to travel several hours from city lights for Milky Way captures. And, if I want iconic scenery as well, travel I must. In July, I'm going back to New Mexico and Arizona: Shiprock, Monument Valley and the Milky Way!

Small town in Czech Republic, Europe

Great reminders, Mads. I love to travel, shoot interesting scenes. At the moment can't afford hopping on a jet plane. I moped around the house for a while... then realized I had all kinds of options for a variety of other sorts of scenes. Meanwhile... everytime I see one of your videos my travel list grows. You are an expensive fellow. Haha!

I dunno... I live in Oklahoma and there is nothing but fields here.I think the most interesting thing we have here is black mesa for astro photography but that's pretty much it unless you go to the talamena national by way during the 2 week fall season. We are called a "fly over state" for a reason. there's nothing here.

Great tips! Use your surrounding area. Any place I can drive to and get back home at a decent time is considered local to me.

i agree.
i love an old fishermen's wharf. it is near my home, and i see it every morning, going to work. every time i shoot it, i learn something.

excellent photos and demonstration of your point!

Agreed. Some of my personal favorite photos are local because I get a chance to go back to my spots under different conditions (lighting, weather, season, time of day, etc.), with different cameras, film (or sensor), etc. Unlike say Ansel Adams, I don't generally have the time to spend 2-3 days in a location, but I can pass a location with a camera multiple times over a year for a similar effect. Conversely, travelling excites the creative instinct by providing new material, so both can be good.

Consider the environmental impact of travel.