I have just gone through a lot of photos to choose my favorites for 2015. I was struck by how many I had cropped to be strong horizontal or panorama photos.

Panorama with oaks, foggy winter morning on Cherry Hill with cell phone towers
Panorama with oaks, foggy winter morning on Cherry Hill with cell phone towers

I suppose I should not be surprised as I often tell students to visualize a photo with-in the frame, and not to let the frame dictate the final size.

California Coastal Range with Oak trees (Quercus lobata) and rolling hills on Mt. Burdell State Park, Novato, California
California Coastal Range with Oak trees (Quercus lobata) and rolling hills on Mt. Burdell State Park, Novato, California

Landscapes really are visualized as broad panoramas. When you intend to crop to a strong horizontal such as these, plan to crop equally from top and bottom, as that will give you a better optical rendering, with less distortion along any horizon line.

Deschampsia cespitosa, tufted hairgrass California native plant Sierra meadow with Castilleja miniata - Great Red Paintbrush.
Deschampsia cespitosa, tufted hairgrass California native plant Sierra meadow with Castilleja miniata – Great Red Paintbrush.

More favorite photos in the galleries.

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