Exposing Snow

It was a bright, sunny, cold winter day.  After lunch, I decided to take my camera for a walk around the 1/2 mile loop at Audubon and experiment with snow pictures.  Snow can be rather challenging to capture because your camera wants to overcompensate for all the bright light entering it.  Often snow pictures will come out gray, even on crisp beautiful days.

Some photographers will tell you the way to get good exposures is to set your exposure compensation up a step…  That’s right – over expose your pictures.  So, I set my ISO on 100, white balance on daylight, and the exposure compensation at +1.  I thought I had the camera on shutter-speed priority… but turns out I had it on aperture priority at f/4.  And off I went.

In post processing, I may have fiddled a bit with sharpness on some, but I didn’t touch anything else. 

The Center
1 – The Nature Center

Wind-swept Weeds
2 – Wind-swept Weeds

3 – Shadows

4 – The Overlook

5 – Wood

Please let me know what you think.  I’m still developing my eye for color and exposure… I know I don’t see things like photographers do yet…  So be critical, please!  (Thanks for helping me learn.)

8 thoughts on “Exposing Snow

  1. Wow, Jennifer. I’m certainly no pro, but I think you did a really good job with these. I especially like the picture of the overlook, where you get a nice contrast between the snow and the blue, blue sky. What you said about your camera adjustments seems about right, but I’ve not had much chance to photograph in snow myself, so I have nothing to offer from my own experience. It looks nice and white in all of these pictures, so I think you’re off to a good start.

  2. Do as I suggest not as I do because after 30 years of photography I make the same mistakes. I get wrapped up in the moment and neglect to read the information displayed in the view finder. IT’s there for just that reason. The images look great despite your goof.


  3. the shadows is beautiful, and so is the grass buried in snow. Glad someone is doing something productive in all this crazy whiteness!!

  4. Very cool. (Or should I say very cold?!?) I think you’ve captured the snow very well. The photos could even be a bit brighter. Thanks for putting your camera settings on the blog. I’ll give them a try for my annual snow/skiing portraits.

  5. I don’t understand f stops yet. I’ll talk to Dave. He’s a good teacher and has a little more time. I’m a tough student. The photos are gorgeous. I always get glaring snow. Ann

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