Charlie Waite found his love for photography while working in the acting industry. ‘I started photographing actors. I would often visit my wife on set while she was filming, but I would wander off on walks and discover the most beautiful landscapes. I found myself wondering why I wasn’t taking photographs of my surroundings,’ explains Charlie. ‘I began taking landscape photos, and initially, I wasn’t impressed with the results. But I kept at it, and then an opportunity arrived to be a landscape photographer for the National Trust’s book of long walks, I went on to do about 30 similar books all around the world.’
By 2006, Charlie had established himself as a widely respected landscape photographer, and founded the Landscape Photographer of the Year competition to celebrate the work of other talented photographers. ‘I thought that it would be great to encourage other people and give them a vehicle to express themselves and share their love of the landscape,’ he says. ‘The camera is an amazing means with which to engage with light, wind, colour, water and the sky. You can become completely immersed in all the elements and come away having noticed smaller details about the landscape, that’s what landscape photography is about.’
With several categories for both adults and youths and ranging from Urban View to Living the View, the competition allows anyone to enter, regardless of experience. ‘Amateur is an odd word because it’s often associated with people who aren’t very good. But non-professional photographers can react, detect and enjoy things in the same way – their eye is just as good as a professional,’ explains Charlie. ‘This competition encourages people to immerse themselves in the production of a photograph. We look for imagination and craft; an image that has been thought through, and a landscape that has been attended to. It’s landscapes like Yorkshire’s that encourages people to go out and photograph it – the beauty of it moves them.’
Keen to enter? Entries to Landscape Photographer of the Year 2018 are open until the 7 July. To find out more, visit www.take-a-view.co.uk
Fancy finding your talent for landscape photography? Follow Charlie’s top tips to capturing the perfect shot
Don’t be preoccupied with the centre of the photo. You should make a point of looking at the whole image. Check the sides – no painter would neglect the edges of his painting, and the same applies to photographs.
Observe light. Look at the character and nature of light, and the way certain surfaces reflect and absorb light.
Don’t always photograph at the height you stand at. An image could be so much better when taken a little higher or lower. Think about other levels – treat yourself to a small stepladder and try a new height, it could make a difference.
Don’t be put off by bad weather. Bad weather can be amazing. It’s not always about taking things in sunlight or on a nice day.
Be on the edge of change. If you hear that the weather is going to change, get out there and be ready to capture it.