Thinking about winter activities

Winter can be challenging for photographers. We recently had the ice storm that created some unique content but often we'll go out and come back disappointed because nothing really sparked. The light can be flat, the colors washed out, and interesting subjects are hibernating.

So what to do?

I don't have a prescription for you but I do have some ideas.

1. Winter can produce stark vistas. Shoot to maximize the cold and loneliness.

2. Winter pics are naturals for conversion to black and white. Be sure to work your whites, blacks, shadows and highlights to maximize your dynamic range.

3. Try some film effects on your B&W conversions. Go for high contrast or heavy grain. Experiment with multiple effects.

4. Try toning your images either colour or B&W. Use split tones on colour shots to liven them up. Try a cyanotype look to really make things cold. Or warm and age your cold scene with a gold tint. Toning is built in to most editors so no cost there.

5. Go inside and shoot a kids hockey game, or figure skating, or your child's swim club. All tough subjects that can produce great images.

6. Buy some really bright and punchy flowers from your local florist and put them by a sunny window to create a counterpoint image, warm and lively inside, cold and snow outside.

7. If someone in your house bakes, photographs of fresh baked goods, nicely composed and lit can be challenging and fun. Pretend you are shooting for a recipe book. Do a great job and you might end up doing so.

There's lots for a photographer to do in the winter. Don't let the cold slow you down.


Ross Chevalier

Technologist, photographer, videographer, general pest

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