Useful Online Resources

This week I will share with you some very useful websites I use to help plan my weekly image. They will cover websites that will help with location scouting and weather monitoring. New websites are cropping up all the time so keep your eye out and share your favorites on the Facebook page.

12/52 - Story Bridge Sunset

Canon 40D @10mm, f16, ISO200 with Tiffen HT Circular Polarizer & Tiffen 0.6 Hard Grad plate filter. HDR +2, 0 -2.

Location Scouting – Flickr is not only a great resource for learning tips and techniques and sharing your images with the world it is also a great place to scout locations. There are numerous ways of using flickr to scout locations. If you find something you like leave a comment or email the photographer about the location. Most people are willing to help you out. Just remember to return the favor when somebody asks you.

  • Use the search function and sort by interesting and wade through the results.
  • Flickr Maps allow you to view aerial maps of the entire world and see GPS tagged or manually tagged images.
  • Join Flickr Groups for the area you are traveling to or live in. Some of these groups have discussion threads about great local locations and it is also a good spot to see what other people have been capturing around the area. Google Maps allows you to check out possible shooting locations with the use of the aerial maps and street view. Not only that but you can turn on the option to display photos that have been tagged in the area. – Google Image Search, is a bit of a hit and miss tool however every now and then it yields an insight into a locations possibilities. Simply enter in a search related to the area you are planning on shooting at. for example for this weeks photo location I would enter in something like “Story Bridge Brisbane at Sunset”.

Weather Monitoring – This little site is a absolute gem. Whilst is it an Australian hosted site it does work for other major parts of the world. Basically it predicts cloud cover up to 120 hours into the future. Its actually a tool created for Astronomers to predict clear skies but I use it in reverse to see when low cloud will be around. Well worth a look РThis is probably my most visited site on the iPhone. It is only for Australian conditions however they may be something similar for your country. The great thing about its weather monitoring is that it is very specific to a location. For example back in my home town of Woolgoolga I can get tide times and other weather conditions for 15 different beaches  in a coastline of just 30km. This localised information is amazing. Not only does it give you the sunrise and sunset times it also supplies first light and last light time which is great for capturing blue hour. – This is not a site I use myself regularly as I use Willy Weather for my local resources the Weather Channels website does give you some great information for most populated areas. Just make sure that you click the “Expand Weather Details” button to get all the information like sunrise and sunset.