It's raining today. What's a photographer to do........?
February 25, 2018 • Leave a Comment
Rainy days can be hard on a photographer. Our art depends on light, be it the light from the stars for astrophotography, to shadows, to the colors of a Barnegat Bay sunset (The Best, in my opinion). It is still winter, and although we have had some beautiful day and I have seen the shoots of spring flowers starting to pop, the weather is still cold and rainy. What are the options for a photographer who does not want to get his or her equipment wet and wants to capture something other than puddles and gray skies? I offer the following:
1) Catch up on photo editing. There is always work to do in editing photos, including culling the bad ones, keeping and cataloguing the good ones, and setting aside the best for your website or to be printed to sell. This can be an endless and boring job, but it is better to do it on a cold gray day, when your studio is warm and there is no rush, than on a beautiful day when you are pressed for time and the one thing you really want to do is go out and shoot!
2) Review your website. This is another job that can be tedious, but it is important. For many of us, our website is our professional face to the world. Just like our personal appearance, it needs tending to regularly so we don't look scruffy, messy, or out of date. If you are like me, you website is your primary gallery. You just never know when your next customer is going to happen across it and consider buying a photo or two of yours. Even if selling your work is not that important to you, if you have a website it should be the best representation of you and your work possible.
3) Practice your still-life photography. Even with low light this is possible with a minimum amount of gear--just a flash, a tripod, and a reflector or a whiteboard. The still-life can be of anything--fruit, the angle of furniture in your house, a house plant in a window, your pet or your spouse (with permission of course!). This is a good exercise to expand your range of competence, to try a new technique, to experiment with camera settings. What you come up with may amaze you and may be useable for other kinds of work.
4) Make lemons out of lemonade. If you simply can't stand being in the house a minute longer, then go out and take your camera. Even your cellphone will do. Just made certain you protect it adequately with the appropriate rain gear. There are very good products on the market, but even plastic bags will do, if used correctly. Once out, you may find good spots to shoot under overhangs, or you can experiment with slow speeds and high f-stops. Indeed, at night, moving vehicles on a busy road can produce some dramatic photographs!
I hope these tips are useful. There are certainly more that I did not include, such as checking out new software that you can get on a trial basis or, if all else fails, cleaning up your workspace and discarding old magazines and papers that accumulated for reasons that are no longer obvious. You could just stare out the window and wait for the sun to reappear, but that makes no sense--unless you have your camera with you and you are waiting for a bird or squirrel to come into your field of view!
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