Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Winter Photography Subjects

It's starting to get really cold here in Maine, and I am hearing nature photographers complain about there being nothing to shoot.  Nothing to shoot? You have to be kidding! There is always something to shoot, you just need to think outside the box, and also keep your mind open to photographing things you might not have planned.

We had snow showers one night last week, so early the next morning I bundled up and went for a walk with my camera to see if I could find some frozen leaves in the snow, ice patterns, frost, etc.  I shot some leaves in the snow, some frost on my windshield, some bamboo seeds, nothing that really made my heart sing, but as always, it felt great to be outside with my camera. 

I happened to notice a single leaf clinging to a branch on my neighbor's red maple and when I raised the camera up to my eye and focused with shallow depth of field to highlight the one leaf and blur the background, I just loved what I was seeing.

For me, this photo is all about survival, perseverance, strength in adversity, the fragility of life.... a strong conceptual photo. It may not have been what I was looking for, but I was sure glad I had found it. My point is, if you don't get outside and look around, you definitely won't find anything to shoot. Bundle up, get out there, see what catches your eye and photograph it! Look up, look down, look for patterns, texture, contrasts, shoot from macro to wide angle, winter can be a wonderful time to make photos.

Here's a list of winter subject suggestions for those of you who live in cold winter zones:

~Snow scenes: landscapes, snow simplifies and also hides distractions 
~Snowstorms- freeze falling snow with a fast shutter, or blur it with a long exposure
~Frost patterns and textures
~Frozen leaves and plants
~Snow patterns
~Ice patterns

~Tree branch shadows on snow

~Tree branch silhouettes
~Ice/snow covered vines and berries

~Christmas cactuses and Poinsettias 
~ Try vertical panning the leafless trees
~Beaches are beautiful in winter too!
~If the weather is really brutal, set up still life arrangements, buy flowers, shoot inside

Here are a few of my favorite winter photos:

Happy Shooting!