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Capture the Magic of Winter (Posted On: Tuesday, January 17, 2006)

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What inspires you about winter? Icicles dripping on the shore of a pond, birds dining at your winter bird feeder or the sun sparkling on snowdrifts? For those photographers who put their cameras away for the winter, maybe it's time to dust it off and try some winter photography to improve your image-making skills.

Winter photography is not only a great way to learn some new techniques for making that award-winning picture, but it is also a wonderful way to get some much needed outdoor exercise and fresh air.

Whether you are shooting with a digital or 35 mm film camera, you will need to keep extra film, media cards and batteries on hand. Since the cold weather tends to deplete charged batteries, you should keep your camera inside your warm coat when you're not shooting.

When I'm looking for winter scenes to photograph, I look for textures and shapes on snow drifts. By framing them very tightly and showing the sweeping lines of the drift you will create a strong abstract image in your camera. Keep the image in your camera's frame simple and uncluttered. For example, winter usually shows us last year's dried milkweed pods or cattails poking through the pristine snow surface. The contrast of a dark stem against the bright snow creates strong yet simple lines in the photograph, which will be very pleasing to your viewer.

Using your telephoto lens you can zoom into a close-up view of ice along the river's edge. With your wide-angle lens you'll be able to frame a landscape view of snow-covered trees. Don't forget you can turn your camera 90 degrees to create a vertical scene for framing tall objects like pine trees or long river surfaces.

To add more fun to your winter photography try cross-country skiing or snowshoeing to your destination, this way you will get even more of a workout as you travel to those hard to reach river scenes and snow drifts.

Some photographers may benefit from joining a group workshop where you can share your knowledge with others who are also into photography. If you're interested in joining an organized Winter Photography Workshop call Bryan Davies at 705-466-5775. Or visit

Submitted by: Bryan Davies


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