How to Get Stunning Mountain Photography Prints

Creating emotions in your imagery, selecting your depth and angle, and waiting for great light are all good ways to elevate your mountain photography. Here are some tips on how to get stunning mountain photography prints.......

sunrise panorama photograph of kualoa mountains on the hawaiian island of Oahu.  Fine art panoramic photography by Hawaii artist Andrew Shoemaker

A very special scene I've wanted to capture for quite some time, the Kualoa mountains are just stunning. As I got to this location it was a little bit too windy to capture the reflection and then right as the sun rose, it was calm for several minutes allowing this beauty to be captured.

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Anyone who’s ever attempted to capture the majesty of a mountain range at dusk on an iPhone knows it’s not as easy as it seems. Mountains are one of the most awe-inspiring landscape features on our planet, and one of the most dynamic. Here are some tips on how to get stunning mountain photography prints.


When shooting your next mountain photo, pay attention to the light. Plan carefully for the best light quality, direction, and temperature. See the mountain as something that catches the light, and your job is to show it off at its best!

Avoid shooting mountains once the sun has reached its full brightness. Dawn and dusk are prime times for stunning mountain photos, as the light is soft and warm.

panoramic view of the Kalalau Valley on the island of Kauai with a rainbow and a dramatic sunset along the Na Pali Coast

Kalalau Valley on the island of Kauai is one of the most special places on Earth to me. Just absolutely breathtaking and if you could imagine what heaven must look like, well I think it'd look like this

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To get a silhouette shot, wait until the sun is just about to rise or has just set behind the mountain or mountain range you’re shooting. This involves arriving a few hours before sunset or sun rise to make sure you’re in position and don’t miss the small window of perfect lighting.

Try visiting the same spot at different times to see how it changes from day to day. In places like Hawaii, the weather changes so often that you’ll be rewarded with something new, like a rainbow in the perfect spot!

A panoramic view of a vibrant rainbow along the na pali coast on the Hawaiian island of Kauai

This was my very first adventure down the Na Pali coast and this is how it bid me farewell. What a magical place and experience

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Consider using a polarizer or other filter to bring out the best in your image.

Create Depth

In photography, depth equals interest. In landscape photography, this often means finding new angles to shoot from that create a sense of scale in your images.

Sometimes you must get up high to create depth. Helicopter and drone photography are great ways to get that new angle! This shot of the famous Na Pali Coast was taken on a scenic helicopter ride, a must for any photographer visiting Hawaii.

a very dramatic angle of the na pali coastline on the Hawaiian Island of Kauai.  Photographed from a helicopter by Andrew Shoemaker

I captured this very dramatic angle of the jaw dropping Na Pali Coast on the island of Kauai. This place has always taken my breath away and one of my most favorite places in the world

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It’s difficult to create depth from a front-on angle, but sometimes it is possible, like with this shot of Honokohau Waterfall......

aerial view from a Helicopter of Honokohau Falls which is the tallest waterfall on the island of Maui

An aerial image I captured of the tallest waterfall on the island of Maui from a helicopter, Honokohau. This two tiered waterfall is just over 1100 feet and is only accessible by air. The peaks of the mountains here receive some of the highest rainfall totals in the world making this waterfall quite a sight!

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If you’re having trouble finding depth in your image, move back and frame it using plants, or place an item or person in the foreground. Or find a reflection! Mountain photos are stunning when they include crisp reflections in pools, lakes, or other bodies of water.

Evoke Emotion

Ansel Adams, one of the greatest landscape photographers in history, described mountains perfectly when he said, “No matter how sophisticated you may be, a large granite mountain cannot be denied — it speaks in silence to the very core of your being.”

Images of mountains stir emotions and bring up good memories filled with adventure. Make it a goal to capture the emotion in your images. You can use things like lighting and color to bring about a certain feeling. For example:

This image’s smooth green ridges and rainbow arcing down into the water evokes serenity, bliss brought about by the perfect blend of nature’s elements.

panorama of the island of Maui photographed from a boat off of Olowalu featuring a rainbow

I captured this amazing panorama of west Maui from a moving boat. It was actually during my son's first birthday party and with the rainbow and the majestic clouds, I just had to capture this beautiful moment

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This image is quite similar, but with deep, shadowy mountains and wispy clouds obscuring part of the view, this mountain photo emits an air of mystery and nature’s grand powers.

panoramic photo of the Na Pali coastline on the Hawaiian island of Kauai featuring a rainbow, dramatic clouds, and vibrant blue water

The Na Pali Coast on the island of Kauai is just an awesome sight! I had the pleasure of photographing this from a boat and was very blessed to have a rainbow here in the scene as well. One of my personal favorite scenes right here on planet earth

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When choosing mountain photography prints for a particular space, have in mind what you want people to feel while they are occupying that space. This will help you narrow down what types of images you want.

Wide or Narrow Focus

To get the most out of your mountain photography, consider bringing along a wide angle and telephoto lens. This offers the chance to capture the best of both worlds! Wide or panoramic photos are always stunning, but it’s also possible to zoom in on part of the mountain or range and capture something entirely different. Experiment with both while you’re waiting for the perfect light.

To get even more creative, adjust your angle. A high angle will have a dramatic effect on your subject, while a low angle will isolate your subject.

Explore the Gallery

People of all ages love panoramic views of mountain ridges and summits or a single peak standing high above it all. Creating emotions in your imagery, selecting your depth and angle, and waiting for great light are all good ways to elevate your mountain photography.

Not a photographer, or don’t have time to get “the shot”? Check out my gallery of landscape photos from all over the world. Consider showing off stunning mountain photography prints in a unique way with a triptych, a photo split into 3 parts.

A long exposure panoramic photograph captured at the beautiful Lanikai Beach on the island of Oahu.  Pastel colors at sunset here make this photograph special

One of the most peaceful zen type of an image that I've created, a long exposure at Lanikai Beach on the island of Oahu just has a surreal look. The water color and pastel tones here at sunset are just really special

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