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Landscapes and Light

Lesson 11 of 12

Understand & Work with Silhouette

Matt Kloskowski

Landscapes and Light

Matt Kloskowski

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Lesson Info

11. Understand & Work with Silhouette

Lesson Info

Understand & Work with Silhouette

Silhouettes, trees, rocks, boats, you saw one earlier. So, same place you saw in some of those other photos, I just silhouetted it. Lake Tahoe. This is 30 minutes from my house. It's just this, you'd never even think to pull off here. But, if you put a 24-70 lens on it and you cut everything else out of the scene, it's a nice shot. And you have crazy, crazy cool looking clouds. Trees. Silhouettes can be about the sky. When I see a cool looking sky, and I'm not thrilled with what I have to shoot, under-expose a little bit and silhouette it. So how do you capture? Under-expose by one-stop. Let your camera do the work, then take your exposure compensation, knock it down by one-stop. Post processing, pretty simple. Remember, we silhouette it. And we silhouette it, so I don't wanna go crazy on the exposure or the shadows, but I do wanna bring maybe a little bit of detail in there. All right, but to give you a little bit of idea in the thought process for this photo, this was at a park in La...

ke Tahoe, and I went there to shoot all these rocks and everything, and really the nicest formations of all these rocks in the water were over to my right, and the sunrise had just fizzled. There was just a bank of clouds over there. It wasn't looking really good. And it wasn't a really engaging photo. It was just blah-like, the way that I was pointing. So I'm looking around and I kinda look up. I'm like, "Okay, what's cool in the scene?" So, I see these clouds all funneling down into the tree. That's cool. Are the trees really cool? Probably not. Silhouette 'em. Now it just has a nice outline to it. There's not a lot of depth and dimension. There's nothin', I'm not close to any of these rocks to make 'em look really good or make 'em big part of the photo, so you silhouette 'em. Little bit of whites. You don't have to, on this one, you're not gonna crank your whites way up 'cause that's gonna make it too bright. So you'll pull it back. You'll definitely want some blacks. And then you can play with the white balance. So before, after. Real simple changes. And think about, you silhouette it, most important thing for post processing is color. 'Cause the blacks, that's gonna all be black. You want color. That's really what you're looking for here.

Class Description

In Landscapes and Light, Matt covers all of the different types of natural light you'll encounter while shooting landscape photography out in the field. 

There isn’t much you can do to influence the light Mother Nature provides on any given day, but you can learn how to work with it. In this class, Matt will show you amazing tips for how to capture the best possible light when shooting, and he’ll discuss the best tools for post-processing and making the most out of any outdoor photo shoot.


Trisha Davis

A lot of helpful tips and tricks to get the shot you need, even if you arent in the perfect location at the perfect time. There is beauty everywhere, you dont always have to travel to find it. Overall I enjoy Matt's classes because he stays on topic and speaks clearly.


Excellent class. I especially appreciated the specifics of what types of subjects work best in each light, as well as the Lightroom tweaks that work best with each. This is a very helpful guide.


I have been looking for this specific type of information. I love the outdoors and have always wanted to be able to capture it. Great course. The examples really helped and loved the part about blah weather. I really needed that because I would just stay home and not shoot on those days. Now I feel inspired to go out in any weather. Thanks.