The snow in Britain has been great for photographers wanting to try some creative photography! All of a sudden there’s lots more light about as the snow acts as a giant reflector, filling in shadow detail. Snow builds up on familiar objects, such as this wire fence, makes them look unfamiliar, and produces interesting patterns.
The snow can also make a sharp object into something much softer, as can be seen in this shot of the razor wire on top of the Defence Academy fence!
With the sun out, all that light bouncing around on the snowy landscape can make getting the correct exposure a bit challenging. One of the turbines of the Westmill Wind Farm standing in a snowy field definitely looked worth the effort – even though it was bitterly cold walking to it in order to photograph it. I’d forgotten just how hard it is to walk in 8 inches of snow!
I used a polarising filter to intensify the blue of the sky. As it was very windy, and the turbine blades were rotating quite fast, I used the high-speed continuous drive to make sure I got an image with the blades in the right place. Sure is a good way to fill up a memory card!
The sun is very useful because it melts the snow and, if the air temperature is below freezing, this can lead to icicles forming. Like many transparent things, they benefit from a bit of back/side lighting.
Here I’ve had to push myself against a wall so I could shoot them from behind against the blue sky. The sun is low down off to the right. I’ve cropped it vertically to accentuate the shape of the icicle.
Whilst out taking these shots, I had the camera inside my jacket to keep it warm. This improves battery life, and reduces the risk of condensation forming on the camera when it’s taken back into the house.
Finally, don’t put your camera away when the daylight ends. You can take long exposure images of snowy scenes, which can be very moody.
Here the tungsten light on the building has made a nice warm-coloured patch of light on the snow. This contrasts with the overall blueness of the rest of the image.
If these images have whetted your appetite, why not get out there and take some yourselves before it all melts?
If you would like to know more about creative photography, we still have some spaces on our “The Creative Eye” course on February 20th. For details go to our website at www.galephotography.co.uk