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Chapter 5. Specialty and Outdoor Shots > Overcoming the challenges of winter ph...

Overcoming the challenges of winter photography

Winter is a great time to get out and take some pictures with your digital camera. While there's certainly no shortage of subjects to capture, getting the shot right can be tricky. Variable light conditions, reflections off bright snow, and hazardous weather conditions combine to make winter the most challenging, yet rewarding, time of year to photograph.

Shoot for proper exposure

The light meter in your digital camera is a highly sophisticated piece of electronics, but it can be completely mystified by a bright field of snow. When shooting an intense scene like that, your camera tries to adjust for the midtone in the scene and will most likely underexpose slightly. The result is gray, murky-looking snow. This can be fixed by increasing the exposure compensation before you take the shot. How much of an increase depends on the lighting situation and the sensitivity of your camera, but a setting between +0.3 and +1.0 EV should do the trick. The slight overexposure returns the snow to its proper whiteness, as shown in Figure A.


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