It’s fun to play around with this area because you can make some very interesting and some very bad images as a result. While I have some basic guidelines that I myself go by, I’m always playing around with landscapes because there is a lot of room to do just that. When it comes to depth of field you have to remember what the story is. Depth can really change how the viewer looks at a photo. I put up these two images because they were taken at the exact same spot just different depths of field.
Mammoth Hot Springs in Yellowstone National Park has some great pools and formations to work with. I’ve gone to those spots many times over the years and each time it’s different. This time I was looking at the steam and the formations. Top image was taken at F/22 and the bottom at F/5.6. The difference is pretty noticeable but each one tells a different story of the same spot. Both exist at the same time so which one is better? There’s no good answer it’s just a different story. If you’re not sure which way to go then take the same composition both ways and see which looks better. Never plan on going back because odds are it will be different when you go back.
Images Captured with Nikon D5, 18-35 f3.5-4.5, on Lexar UDMA Digital Film