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A Quick Guide to Winter Photography

Curators’ Corner

A Quick Guide to Winter Photography

Even though it’s a bit of an adjustment to get used to colder weather and shorter days, winter can be a magical time for photography, especially when you have a game plan going into it. Here are a few tips to come away with fantastic winter imagery:

Lighting for Snow Shots

No matter what equipment and settings you’re using, your shots will have a tendency to be underexposed when you’re photographing bright, white snow. Turn your dial up +1 or +2 more than you usually would otherwise. You will also generally want to avoid using your flash. The light bouncing against the snow can cause underexposure.

Lastly, be sure to adjust your white balance to the shade setting. If not, all that beautiful white snow may end up looking blue instead.

Be Mindful Of Time

Because of the starkness of the season, your line of vision in winter can be that much clearer compared to the rest of the year. The brief windows of time right before and right after the sun sets will usually provide the best opportunities to shoot and take advantage of golden light. However, you can lose daylight pretty quickly, so check to see precisely when that magic sunset upon a snowy mountaintop is occurring. Five or ten minutes can make a big difference.

Protect Your Gear

When it comes to being prepared on a winter shoot, above all else, think in terms of protective gear. If it’s sleeting and snowing, your equipment will be more likely to get wet and become damaged.

In addition, you may want to gradually ease your equipment into the harsh, cold weather so that it’s not shocked by it. Digital cameras can freeze, lenses can crack, and condensation can destroy your cameras if you take everything from 70 degrees to 5 degrees in an instant. Consider taking everything into your garage a few minutes before you head out into the cold to ease the temperature change.

Stay warm out there this year. Don’t forget to share your best winter shots with Duggal on Instagram.