Now that almost everyone has a fully-functional camera in their pocket pretty much all of the time, our love of photographing, documenting, and sharing the quality moments of our lives has never been more obvious. It has also never been easier, but if you’re hoping to take better photos than ever before, there are some easy tips and tricks that could make your shareable content look absolutely professional. While many are content with taking photos of their meals and their new shoes, for outdoor explorers there’s nothing that beats a good day out with your camera equipment, a pair of sturdy shoes and the urge to create something beautiful. Here are some great tips for those who want to improve their photography and keep a lasting reminder of the spectacular world around us.

Mind the Sun

Photography often comes down to light, and if you want to take some quality photos, then you’re going to need to be aware of sunlight and how to use it properly. One of the main pieces of advice for beginners is to avoid the midday sun as much as possible. Between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m., the sun is at its peak, and it will have a drastic effect on your pictures that you may not want. The lack of shadow and the glare of the light will make your pictures seem harsher, and you will have very little control over the final product. This doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t take any photos during those hours, but more that you should be aware of the challenges and seek out shaded spots to set yourself up.

Don’t be limited by distance

Trekking into the forest or up the mountain all day is great exercise and offers plenty of opportunity for camera practice, but technology and human ingenuity means that it’s not exactly necessary these days. Using a few additional pieces of equipment, you will be able to take long distance photos incredibly easily, meaning that you can get close-ups of nervous animals before they know you’re there, or take panoramic landscapes without having to climb a mountain. Take some professional advice from Phone Scope about digiscoping, and you’ll quickly realize that you don’t need to spend a fortune on fancy equipment to get some great distance shots that you’ll be proud of.

The importance of background

When you’re shooting outside, the chances are that your background is going to be as important as your foreground. Even if you’re using a high level of bokeh and really exploring that depth of field, elements such as the horizon can make a significant effect on your finished images. Make sure that your horizon lines are straight, and that you are taking the rule of thirds into account when setting up your framing. The best way to capture an image is to think about what you want in the frame at all times, and making sure that you have none of the extraneous elements that could distract your audience.

Follow these simple pieces of advice, and you’ll soon have that Instagram profile filled with lush outdoor photography that will look professional and gorgeous.