This one is most probably for me; quite often I tell myself that the bad weather is going to be good. But still, I had a hard time convincing myself that it is going to be okay to go out. There were several weekends I just sat inside the home justifying myself that staying back was a right decision. And of course, ended up doing nothing! However, occasionally I ventured out when the weather was not perfect. Although I had some challenges dealing with elements, it was not as bad as I thought.
So does bad weather put you off quite often? Do you find it as a hurdle between you and your plan ? Well, if you think deep fog, thundering rain, and fierce storm can stifle your photography sessions, consider going out.
Bad weather unfolds the drama
I agree that the bad weather is not a good shooting condition; however, the scene you are seeing is much more compulsive. Moody, ominous clouds can make for an excellent backdrop for your photographs. Generally, when the weather is uncooperative, and the wind is bashing you in all direction, it is hard to compose your images, and moreover, light may not be favorable either. But, there is something always static around you, and you just have to figure out your composition. Notably, in landscape photography, you can give a dramatic touch to your photos. However, gusty wind and low light may not be appropriate to photograph flying birds and other fast-moving wildlife; you could shoot amazing and dramatic landscape photography.
Always go with open-minded and alternate option (Plan -B)
Not that every visit you make to your favorite location is going to be productive. As a matter of fact, many of my ventures was unproductive. But here is a good part of it; you might have had a nice walk or met a new friend, and you might have exchanged your experience. A couple of months back, I was at the beach with an intent to photograph shorebirds, but the lighting condition was not at all in a favorable condition, and it was dark and cloudy. I had no choice to work with what I had at that time and did some landscape. Although it was not a masterpiece, the picture came out okay to me.
Let the wind blow
Here in East Coast, rain is frequent and always windy. It is frustrating when you are shooting macro, and the wind blows in all direction and challenging to keep the focus sharp. However, the mildly blowing wind could add dramatic color fusion to your art. Although, now I learned this in a hard way I came to an understanding that It is not the weather causes the problem, but it is my thinking process and perspective.
The wind is not always favorable elements depending on the subject you are photographing, we need to wait for the short pause. So, have your composition set and wait for the wind to stop. It may take a while, but it is worth a wait.
Especially in the fall season, wind could help you to capture moving colorful foliage; so set the camera on the tripod, compose your image and wait for the wind.
Shooting after the rain
Although the dreary downpour may not please you that much, the post-downpour may add more color and freshness to your art. As soon as the rain ends, colors become more vibrant and intense; which will bring out the elegance of the elements. Also, after the storm; everything looks fresh and clean, every color in nature just pops out!
After the rain, even wildlife come out of the shelter to catch the meal, and it is the best opportunity for you to capture when critters are busy foraging or hunting. Especially birds try to stay low which even makes easy to shoot at eye level.
Snow Fog, Mist, and Haze – Not bad at all
First of all, I am not a big fan of snow. For a while, I did not venture out at all during the winter season. However, very recently I started stepping out of my comfort zone. Eventually, I got used to it.
There are some critters such as red foxes, owls and some waterfowls like winter season and it is an excellent opportunity to photograph these winter loving critters before winter ends. When food is not abundant critters, do come out to stretch their territory and explore other options. All you have to do is look out for the right location and try to visit the place again and again.
If you still don’t want to go out during the snow and If you leave in a suburb or countryside you may be able to photograph birds and other native animals in your backyard.
But, protect your gears
It is hard to carry around all the protection such as a dry bag, anything waterproof cover, etc., along with your equipment to keep everything safe when you need to hike a bit to get there. Here are some light protection materials I always carry in my pockets.
Yes, Ziplocs are not just meant for Sandwich! Keep a bunch of lightweight plastic storage bags (such as Ziploc) in your camera bag. They come handy when you are in the situation where you don’t have shelter nearby. Always keep your extra batteries and memory cards in Ziploc bags. Ziploc bags are lightweight and flexible, you can stuff in lots of accessories in one Ziploc.
Empty and Clean Trash bags:
Oh yeah! They are very handy and protects from rain very well. Just keep a couple of them in your camera bag. When it rains just cover camera and lens in a simple pull. And of course, don’t throw them away when done; they are reusable trash bags can be re-used for its actual purpose.