Shooting Landscape Photography in Fog

I personally love fog; I think it adds a beautiful otherworldly element to images. This great video walks you through the process of working in fog and finding compositions that are enhanced by the murky environment.

In this video, Andrew Marr finds some gorgeous shots and offers some good tips for creating them on an early morning covered by fog. One thing to notice is how he changes his shooting process from the traditional landscape technique a bit, favoring isolated subjects and using wider apertures to highlight them, allowing both the shallower depth of field and partially obscured background to create a strong pull toward his points of emphasis.  If you're wondering when and where to find fog, here's a quick primer to help:

  • Radiation Fog: You can expect this on clear, windless nights when the temperature is near the dew point, most often in lower areas. Be sure to be up early in the morning for it, as the sun burns it off relatively quickly.
  • Advection Fog: This occurs when warm and moist air moves over a colder surface. It's common at seaside locations when areas on the land are cooler than over the water.
  • Upslope Fog: This type of fog happens when moist air is blown to higher altitudes, typically up a mountain. 
  • Steam Fog: This occurs when colder and dry air moves over warmer water. You can typically see it over lakes and ponds earlier in the winter when the water is still warmer than the surrounding environment.

Do you have any foggy images? Share them in the comments! 

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8 Comments

Being in L.A., i have a smoggy photo. Lol Pollution can be quite beautiful.

Kyle Medina's picture

I love morning fog but here in Colorado it seems to be a very rare thing or at least in the plains/foothills. I'll be in Washington next month in hopes of some good fog shots. I was in Oregon last year and got one of my favorites and it even includes me ;).

Paolo Veglio's picture

Morning fog plus some mist from a waterfall nearby in northern Michigan...

Denis Trudeau's picture

Saint-Zénon in Québec

Christian Hartmann's picture

Rolleiflex 6x6 - not really a pure landscape but loved the fog that day. Allways so peaceful to walk through the woods when there is a lot of fog.

Alex Cooke's picture

Ahhh I've got a Rolleiflex 6x6 too. Such a wonderful camera.

Christian Hartmann's picture

Yes, definately my favorite medium format camera.

I love atmosphere. Summer morning in KY - Medium Format Velvia RVP 100 Slide Film.