- Cindy Ellis
Taking Photos in the Snow
BATTERIES. If you do not have an extra battery for your camera, winter is probably the best time for this investment. The cold weather decreases your battery life. Remember to keep your extra battery in an inner pocket close to your body to extend its life. Also if possible keep your camera under your jacket between uses.
CAMERA CARE. Remember snow melts so be careful and keep your camera dry. If your camera becomes damp, wipe off the camera immediately. After the day in the snow, place your camera and some drying agent like DigiDry silica gel in a ziplock bag to make sure all the moisture is removed. Cameras like the Fuji XP140 camera are weatherproof, waterproof and shockproof which make them great skiing companions.
LIGHTING ISSUES. Snow can sometimes fool your light meter. Snow reflects a lot of light and can make your photos show less detail and color may not be as intense. Many of our compact digital cameras have a snow and beach mode which will help you eliminate this problem. If your camera does not have specialty modes, sometimes just cutting on your flash may help according to Kodak.com. If you own an SLR camera and notice a bluish tone to your photos, you may want to preset your white balance. Snow is also a perfect excuse to experiment with the different metering systems. Try spot metering off your subject's face. How about exposure compensation? Perhaps adding +0.5 to +1 compensation will make your photos better. It is amazing how well the new matrix metering systems work, so you may not even have to do any adjustments which will give you more time to compose your photo.
LANDSCAPE AND STILLS. The snow makes a great backdrop for landscapes and still life. Try to show some contrast. Holly branches with their green and red add contrast to the white snow. Dress your snowman is bright colored accessories. Winter also is full of texture and patterns. Look around for different textures and patterns whether in footprints, tree bark, or fuzzy mittens. Try different or unusual angles to capture the spirit of winter and perhaps even the depth of the snow.
SUBJECTS IN ACTION. Sledding, skiing, snow angels, and snowboarding are several of the fun action shots of winter. Remember to place your camera on the rapid fire mode and focus tracking to insure that your photos will be sharp. Many cameras have sports settings that will automatically adjust for action shots.
TOO COLD OUTSIDE. If the weather is frigid, consider shooting through the window or through the front door. If you choose to shoot through the window make sure your flash is disabled and watch for reflection. A circular polarizer may help cut down the reflection.