Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Instructor's Tip: Snow

(Sorry this weeks Instructor's Tip is late. I've actually when working on putting one of Russ' tips into action. I will post about it later this week. For now, here is today's tip:)

Enjoy this week's "Instructor's Tip" by one of my favorite instructors, award winning nature photographer Russ Burden. To learn more about how Russ captured this image, join him on one of his photo tours. Visit Russ Burden Photography to get more information.

Snow photography is broken down into two types of conditions. The first deals with making images while snow is falling or made while it’s gray and overcast with snow enveloping the landscape. The second deals with crisp clean sunlight reflecting off its surface. The light is so intense and bright it wreaks havoc with a camera’s metering system.

I love to exploit the beauty of a fallen snow. The setting becomes a monochromatic wonderland in its expanse or a miniature world of white on white if you work a macro. Subject wise, the possibilities are endless. The world takes on an entirely fresh look. Whether you look to the left, right, in front or behind you, there’s something new and different to shoot.

Use slow shutter speeds to exaggerate the streaking lines of falling snow. To arrest the descending flakes, use a shutter speed of 125th or faster. Avoid using flash. It will illuminate the flakes directly in front of the lens and appear as undesirable, bright white blobs. I do use fill flash when I’m close to my subject if the falling flakes are small and intermittent.

To take a class with Russ or a fellow Digital Photo Academy instructor in your area, check out the Digital Photo Academy. I took Russ' intermediate and advanced courses last year, and he continues to be a strong source of knowledge and encouragement as I progress in my photography.

Don't forget to check Take Great Pictures for Russ' most recent tips. On the home page, click on the "Photo Tips And Techniques" button in the left hand column. Additionally, check out his "Digital Tip of the Month" found by clicking on the Digital Photography button.

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