Cloud Photography: Tips for Capturing the Best

Clouds are beautiful. I don’t know anyone who doesn’t think so, but capturing them on film can be tricky. The sky is often too bright or the clouds are just not where you want them to be. In this blog post, we will discuss techniques for getting your best cloud photos.

cloud photography

Find a clear day with little to no wind

cloud photography

It is important to find a clear day with little to no wind. Wind can blow the clouds in different directions and make it difficult to capture what you want. If it is not sunny, try to find an area that will be in the sunlight such as on a beach or in a field during sunset.

Take pictures at different times of day – sunrise, sunset, and midday

cloud photography

One of the best times to photograph clouds is at sunrise, sunset, and midday. It’s important to take pictures at different times of day because there will be a difference in the lighting and shadows. For example, when you’re taking photos during sunrise or sunset it is perfect timing with regards as what camera settings are needed for each type if photograph; however midday time requires less harsh light so one would use softer image quality such as ISO setting on their digital SLR (or higher resolution print).

Look for different clouds to get various emotions.

Clouds are amazing things to look at, and it’s even more of a pleasure when you can see the different types. For example, looking for cirrus clouds may provide a sense of tranquility because they come from high-level humidity and tend to drift across the sky. These delicate and thin clouds often give off a feeling of hope and optimism since they’re so ephemeral. Sometimes cumulus clouds can also seem peaceful because their fluffy masses form billowing shapes that don’t always move quickly. On the other hand, cumulonimbus clouds appear as dark thunderheads that foreshadow bad weather with an ominous presence. Many people experience such different emotions when seeing such different cloud formations!

Use a tripod for stability when taking the picture

cloud photography

A tripod is a three-legged device that can be used to keep a camera stable.

With a tripod, the camera can be stabilized for panoramic shots or macro close-ups. Tripods are also useful for group pictures, since they allow the photographer to sit down and take the picture without having to hold up his arms for long periods of time. By maintaining stability, tripods help prevent blurriness in photographs caused by camera movement.

There are three ways that photographers have been able to stabilize their cameras: by using a tripod, by shooting at slower shutter speeds, or by shooting at an aperture that’s closed down as much as possible.

Make sure there is something in the foreground that will make a good background

In photography, the term “foreground” refers to anything that appears closer to the camera.

The foreground can have a number of functions in a photograph: it may frame an object or scene; establish a sense of place and time; provide scale reference for nearby objects; serve as a backdrop for other subjects. Foregrounds can include natural features such as trees, mountains, rivers and lakes, or man-made features such as buildings and bridges. The background is everything behind the foreground. In contrast with foregrounds which are usually static elements in photographs, backgrounds tend to be more dynamic spaces since they often change from one moment to another – day by day or even minute by minute. A good foreground will make a good background!

 Consider using filters to enhance your photo’s colors or add more depth

1. Polarizing filters can be applied to cut down on unwanted reflections and make colors pop

2. A graduated ND filter can create a blue sky and extend the depth of the photograph

3. Using a circular polarizer can make water more transparent, or bugs easier to see

For a different outcome, use an ND filter

For a different outcome, use an ND filter. For this type of photography, you may want to find ways to eliminate the glare and causes for overexposure. This is especially true when you’re working with light sources that are too strong to be affected by your exposure settings. With the ND filter, it’s possible to control the exposure and focus on the desired components of the photograph without having them look washed out or blurry.

Keep shooting until you get it right!

cloud photography

When I’m working on taking photographs, I often find myself getting frustrated with the camera. It takes a lot of patience to take good photographs and I always need to remind myself that it doesn’t happen overnight. The best way that I’ve found to combat this is to keep shooting until I get it right!

Make your photographs more interesting by including natural settings.

When taking pictures in the sky, you may want to include some natural settings in the foreground. This will make your photographs more interesting. For example, if you are looking at a picturesque horizon obscured by clouds, you can have a calm river with trees on either side of it flowing past your feet.

Pay close attention to the weather forecast.

It is important to pay close attention to the weather forecast when taking pictures with your tripods. It can be very frustrating having to take your tripod out just before a storm comes, after you have prepped all of your materials and are eager to take some great shots!

Before packing up, check the online forecast or consult the National Weather Service for an update. This can save you a lot of time and energy by being prepared for any changes in the weather.

Choose the Right Camera Settings

cloud photography

When I’m taking pictures, I always use the following camera settings:

1. If you’re taking a picture on a sunny day, turn off your quick-flash function to avoid overexposing the image.

2. Always keep your ISO low to avoid graininess in your photographs.

3. When I want to take a macro photograph, I always make sure my depth of field is set at shallow to make sure everything’s in focus.

By following these tips, you should be able to take some really great cloud photographs!

Start off with a small aperture. If sky is not in focus or if it’s too bright then adjust settings. Slow shutter speed may create motion blur effect that evokes emotion from viewer. Look for different clouds to get various emotions and weather forecast as needed. When taking macro photos – use shallow depth of field to make sure everything’s in focus so nothing looks blurry even when zoomed up close on the computer screen.. Use polarizing filter/graduated ND filter/circular polarizer depending on type of photo desired (ex: nature vs city).

Create Long Exposure Cloud Photos Using Your Imagination

One of the best techniques to create long exposure cloud photos is to use your imagination, primarily by developing an idea of what the photo would look like. Take some time to think about what you want the sky to look like in your pre-planned photo. For example, if I wanted something dark and moody with dramatic skies, I would do my best to create that kind of sky using my imagination.

If I wanted something bright and cheerful, I would create the photo to match.

Some Other Techniques for Capturing Awesome Cloud Photos

Many people like creating photos with white clouds that pop against a dark sky or vice versa. It is also possible to see interesting results by trying other techniques such as creating colorful cloud photos using filters or high dynamic range (HDR) processing (though it should be noted that HDR photography isn’t technically considered long exposure). Another technique involves capturing several images of different exposures so you can merge them together during post-processing software, which allows you to capture more detail in both the highlights and shadows than one image ever could on its own.

Zoom in to Show More Detail

One of the techniques for capturing cloud photography is to zoom in. You can take a closer look at the smaller details and shapes that might otherwise be hard to see. It also gives you a chance to experiment with your composition and framing by zooming in on different parts of your photo. The other technique is to use a two-second timer, which will give you more time to set up perfect compositions and poses for your photos.


By looking at the techniques for capturing cloud photography, you will be able to experiment with different equipment and zoom settings. You can also take advantage of using a two-second timer when your camera is on a tripod or flat surface. These are just some tips that might help improve the quality of your photos!