Photography Tips

Photographing Autumn Leaves So You Can Almost Feel the Rustle in Your Pictures

I love autumn – not necessarily the darker and damper mornings, but the constantly changing hues in nature, the sunsets and the amount of fun that can be had in the autumn leaves and muddy puddles. Moreover, I love photographing autumn.

Photographing Autumn

As a family we always try to visit Whipsnade Zoo during October or early November – not just to see the animals but for some serious leaf kicking and puddle jumping. No-one is too old for either of these activities and they make for some great photos.

Camera Settings

By setting your camera to sports mode or if you’re on a DSLR, setting it to Aperture with a slightly higher than usual ISO or to Shutter priority with a higher speed, you can capture the water splashing around the boots or the leaves flying through the air. (It was at this point in puddle jumping that we realised these boots leak, no more taken that day!)

Natural Fun

Photographing autumn snaps like this can’t be posed – you can have loads of fun creating a great shot (I suspect the kids will be more than happy to do it again for you!) and it’s natural fun.

As the light changes in autumn you can also get some incredibly colourful shots as it’s a season of so many contrasts. It’s worth learning how to move the focal point on your camera so you can get what you want into focus, not what the camera thinks you want to focus on.


If your pictures come out a bit ‘flat’ when you’ve taken them, you can always use a little bit of post-production to bring out the colour and the detail. If your camera is on auto, it will do a great job – sometimes it just needs a little bit of extra help. In the picture below, my camera was struggling to deal with the brightness of the sunset, the trees and the difference on the ploughed fields.

By reducing the highlights and intensifying the colour a little I have recreated what my eye could see – the wonders of autumn leaves in all their glory.

Autumn is such a beautiful time of year, why not share these ideas with your friends on social media, so they can capture some special moments too this season? If you have any tips as well, do share with us below.

Guest Blog

This post was a guest blog from Jenny Smith. Jenny has been taking photographs for as long as she can remember and now specialises in taking pictures of the natural world, especially animals. Her photo of a hippo was awarded ‘Highly Commended’ in the ZSL Photography Competition in 2014 and was displayed in installations at both London and Whipsnade Zoos. She was shortlisted again in 2015 and has been shortlisted in two categories in 2016. When not out with her camera, she runs her own business DigitalJen ( providing commercial, creative and digital business services for small businesses – which can include the odd product shoot now and again.