I am trying to improve my landscape photography. In landscape photography, I am having a problem figuring out how to define "the subject". Maybe as a lifelong flatlander now living in the mountains I am just overly impressed by the panoramic views. But in reading about landscape photography, I hear things like "define the subject", "cut out distracting elements", "get rid of the large foreground", etc. But when I'm looking at a panoramic view that includes river, trees, mountains, and sky I just want to capture it all! In these cases, is it really about defining a subject or is it more about getting the exposure and colors right to try to convey what I see? Or is it more about going to a place at the right time rather than snapping when you happen to be there? I'm including a few uncropped photos to help with the discussion.
I have no idea what the subject would be here. I was just struck by the vastness of the view.
Boreas Pass, Colorado by DreamspunFarm, on Flickr
I suppose the river is the subject. How does that change my composition?
Eleven Mile Canyon, Lake George, CO by DreamspunFarm, on Flickr
Again, I was struck by the vast view and the distance of the mountains.
View from Wilkerson Pass, Lake George, CO by DreamspunFarm, on Flickr