Camera Modes

Landscape mode

Written by Gail Bjork

Landscape mode helps you obtain maximum sharpness when taking photos of distant scenes such as cityscapes, seascapes, skyscapes and distant forests.

Landscape sceneMaximum photo sharpness for distant scenes

The landscape mode on a digital camera is a long-distance scene mode also known as infinity mode. Landscape mode is represented by an icon that looks like a mountain range.

Landscape mode provides maximum sharpness for distant and wide-vista scenes. It is suitable for photographing cityscapes, seascapes, skyscapes and distant forests.

When switching to landscape mode, the focus is fixed at infinity. There is usually no need to check focus before taking a picture. However, if there are objects in a scene, lock focus on one that is about a third of the way between the nearest and furthest object.

Infinity mode can be useful when photographing through glass, chain-link fences and other similar scenes that are difficult to determine just where to focus.

Infinity or landscape mode symbolLandscape mode shutter speed and aperture

The digital camera may automatically choose a small lens aperture. This is to provide a deep depth of field.

A slow shutter speed may also be selected by the camera when using landscape mode. If light is low, hold the camera steady or use a camera support such as a tripod.

About the author

Gail Bjork

Gail Bjork, who is passionate about digital photography, is the owner and editor of Digicamhelp.Gail is the author of three illustrated ebooks about digital photography. A number of her photos and digital photography related articles appear at other websites.In 2006, a series of her photos, People in the Louvre, were exhibited at the Underground Photo Gallery
in Iisalmi Finland. Eight of her photos taken in the Florida scrub are on permanent exhibition at Parrish Medical Center in Titusville, Florida.Gail served twelve years as an elected member of The School Board of Palm Beach County, Florida, one of the largest school districts in the U.S. She has also been the editor of a small town newspaper and a free-lance writer. Gail and her husband owned and ran several small businesses.


  • You do not need long exposure times to photograph the moon.  Putting a camera on a tripod and taking a long duration shot will result in the moon smearing due to the rotation of the Earth.  The reason that the moon was a fuzzy flashlight point was more that it was over exposed than it was out of focus.

    I have taken perfectly good pictures of a 3/4 moon with f/8, ISO200, and a 1/250 shutter using a 300mm lens on a crop sensor camera.

  • Unfortunately, your SD600 camera is probably not up to the task of capturing good moon shots, primarily because it only has a 3X zoom. The only thing I can suggest is to mount your camera on a tripod or other camera support to keep the camera steady during a long exposure. You should still try to lock focus on the moon and not solely rely on infinity mode. Use the self-timer to release the shutter button.

    We have two articles on photographing the moon that will provide more insights:

    Photograph the moon and Moon photography tips

  • Hi,
    I am new to using a digital camera and the booklet that came with my camera ( Cannon Powershot SD600) using terminology that I am not familiar with. But thanks to this site, I can learn a lot. I do have one question if anyone can help with. I took a picture of the full moon using the night time mode and also used infinity. However it came out looking like a small fuzzy flashlight pinpoint. Did I do anything wrong and how can I correct it? Any answers would be greatly apprecitated. Thanks.