Monday, November 12, 2007
Trick Shots: Snow
Jump in to winter photo opportunities with these tips
Pack A Polarizing Filter
When the sun is shining, you do not—I repeat—do not want to go out on a snow shoot without a polarizing filter. A polarizing filter can continuously vary the amount of polarized light that passes through it. In doing so, it can darken a blue sky and make white clouds appear whiter and, most important in snow shooting, reduce glare on snow and ice. Finally, a polarizing filter can help you "see" through water by reducing reflections on the surface of the water.
A polarizing filter is most effective when the sun is off to your left or right. It's ineffective when you're shooting toward or away from the sun. When using a polarizing filter, remove your skylight or haze filter if you typically leave one on your lens. That will help prevent vignetting, especially when using wide-angle lenses.
I used a circular polarizing filter for both of these pictures, taken in Antarctica.
Dress For Success
Dressing for successful photography helped me get a photograph of an ice field in Antarctica. I was wearing knee-high, waterproof boots. I was also dressed in a warm parka and wore Windstopper® gloves to keep my "trigger finger" relatively warm.
Had I been cold and miserable, I would have been in a bad mood and perhaps not have been inspired to take the picture, perhaps my favorite, from my Antarctica expedition.
No matter what the weather conditions, always dress for success.
Keep 'Em Warm
In addition to keeping your body warm, it's essential to keep your camera and extra batteries warm. Cold temperatures can suck the life out of batteries faster than you can say, "I'm freezing."
Keep your camera inside your coat until you want to shoot, and keep plenty of extra batteries in your pants or shirt pockets, close to your body.
I took this picture of an iceberg while riding in a Zodiac that was cruising through the water. The temperature felt well below freezing, but by keeping my camera and batteries warm, I was still able to shoot.
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