I love shooting vistas and panoramas of wide open spaces . More intimate photos, like macros and forest-only (ie. no streams) shots, just don't appeal as much to me. I don't really know why. I will shoot forest shots, but in my opinion, they are quite difficult to do well. It's probably due to the lack of a clear subject. Plus, there are just a lot of forests that are just not photogenic to me. By "forest shots", I mean those shots taken "in the forest", not those taken from "above the forest", which I do all of the time. I like being in the forest, but a lot of them are just not that pretty. That means, to make a forest shot interesting, it (probably) needs to be about the patterns, the colors, the contrasts, the simplicity or cleanliness, the rarity of the forest, or some seeming story that can be inferred from the composition.
Here are some of my favorite forest photo shots, along with why I like them:
The photo above is from the Kepler Track in New Zealand. What makes it work, IMO, are the mossy trees and rocks (rarity and patterns), the color saturation, the tilt of the trees, the very limited sight distance, and the cleanliness of the trail. Add to that my memory (story) of that magnificent landscape, and I like it.
The photo above is from Nelson Lakes National Park, New Zealand. New Zealand has probably the most interesting forests that I have seen. The bark and the moss provide contrast. It is an unusual forest (rarity). There is no subject other than the colors, the contrast, and the patterns. But in sum, it works.
This forest in Michigan's Upper Peninsula works due to the contrasting birch, the patterns, and the color saturation of the forest green.
This forest in Shenandoah National Park works due to the unusual moss and fog (rarity), and the resultant color saturation.
I like this shot from Shenandoah National Park due to the backlit trees with sunbeams (rarity). I purposefully moved so that the trees blocked the sun, so that the sunbeams were more clearly defined.
This photo, also from Shenandoah National Park, work due to the saturated ferns (color, patterns), and the moss on the distant trees (rarity), plus the cleanliness of the scene.
I like this very old shot of trees in Redwood National Park due to its rarity, cleanliness, and the color saturation.
I like this shot in Lolo National Forest for its rarity (I have not not done many winter trips, plus the partial "snow ghosts"), plus the simplicity of almost no color: the photo has mostly white and unsaturated darks.