Mistakes are common in photography. Here’s a checklist I created to help me avoid the worst of them so that I don’t screw up that perfect shot.

Before the Shoot


– Charge battery in the camera, spare in the bag

– Empty memory card in the camera, spare in the bag

– Camera set to shoot raw

– Picture size to large

– Picture control to your preference (neutral is mine)

– ISO set to desired value, usually 100

– Camera in right mode (aperture priority or manual)

– Shutter release set to your preference (single or mirror up)

During the Shoot


– Once composition is set, lock down tripod legs, ballhead, and camera plate

– Check focus and depth of field

– Before each shot inspect lens and filters for dust or water drops

– After each shot review your histogram and highlight warning, adjust exposure or bracket if necessary

– Check the corners and edges of each shot for distracting elements or important elements that are cut off

– Check for lens flare

– Bracket a few shots for white balance

– If shoot moving objects, try different shutter speeds

After the Shoot


Celebrate your kick ass shot!

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For more landscape photography, tutorials, and workshops photos, text, and video is copyright Joshua Cripps. Any use without my express written permission is really not cool, man.

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