You might wonder what a picture of a snowy surface with a stripe of brown water has to do with the title “Remember your batteries”, well the story is quite simple and you will soon find out.
The picture is actually a proof of a cellphone being able to capture the right moment even if there are better gear available. I was out in the woods with my fatbike. Far from everything I found a lonely pine at the end of a bog hole. It had been snowing heavily the past 12 hours but still the hole was partly open. Exited over this line drawing a contrast from the white snow and also leading attention towards the pine I had to stop and take the picture, only to find out that my camera was completely empty.
So what do one do? In my case I picked up the phone and had to walk around for a bit to find the perfect angle and distance. I know that my camera would have managed this a lot better, but I am quite pleased with the result anyway. It would have been nice with some snow falling or even some fog to white out the pines in the far distance, but the weater was not like that this day.
So the the morale of this post is to always check your batteries before leaving the house and of course to take what one has available and use that instead if the batteries run flat.
The cold winter in Norway can be nice as well. When the temperatures creeps below -20oC the landscape turns into a more quiet one. The crisp snow reduces much of the sounds. Cars moving on snow instead of asphalt makes less noise as well.
There is another aspect when taking photos in the cold. The camera is not meant to be operating in these temperatures, but most often it can be used even though. The front element can end up being covered in dew which then again gets frozen. My normal way of handling this is to put on a lens hood and then covering the whole lens and the hood with a sock without a toe (cut it of). This reduces the chance of dew on the front element.
I don’t cover the camera any further, but I do often keep my spare batteries I’m my inner pockets. If the battery goes low on power then I have a fresh and warm battery to keep me going.
The landscape has softened edges and the light gets reflected from every snow covered surface. This makes the light even harder to capture images of. And the camera most often gets distracted from this as well. You will typically see this as a bit dark and blue pictures. So a good tips when taking pictures is to overexpose some (crank the shutter speed down a stop or the aperture value down a stop). This results in the images that is a bit lighter and the camera observes the colors more correctly as well.
So now you know a bit of my winter photography. If you use it or not is up to you. Best thing you can do is to go out and try it out yourself.
One of my favorite areas is Trollheimen. It’s a national park just south of Trondheim. The area has everything from bare mountains to dense forest.
The area beautiful the whole year. During the winter the whole area is covered in snow and the temperatures can get as low as -20oC. The trees get a nice layer of soft snow and the uneven surfaces on the ground gets flattened out. The sun is visible only a couple of hours each day and when it is its very close to the horizon. The white snow and the low sun makes long shadows and contrasts.
And then when the spring comes the snow starts to melt and the green colors become visible once again. This time of the year can be both beautiful and quite rainy. The bypassing rain clouds can make a wonderful scenery.
Slowly the summer sets in, but still there can be snow in the upper parts of the mountains. The contrasts between the clear blue water, the saturated greens and the white snow can be a fantastic combination
The finally my favorite part of the year comes. All the green leaves and heather turns into variations of yellow and red. As this happens a fantastic combination of colors shows. If you catch this on a clear day you will find an amazingly saturated landscape witch you can get lost in for hours.
Have you ever opened your photo library and started scrolling up and into the forgotten tails of your photographic history. When I established this web page I wanted to find the best pictures and I started scrolling.
Of course I had a lot of images, but not all of them are worth mentioning. Actually, there is only a handfull witch I do like enough to get some space here at my web page. So I started marking them with a star to get some overview.
So if you have nothing to do this evening I recommend you to start looking through your images, maybe the ones you took 10 years ago. There are a lot of “not so good” images, but the locations might still be of interest. So why don’t you have a look and pick a couple of them and try to make them better?
My photography has never really been about the gear. Of course if I do find my area of photography to lack some kind of equipment I do spend a long time putting up comparisons between the alternatives on the marked, but once I’ve settled I don’t really pay that much attention to new and even better cameras and so on. After all; it’s not the gear that makes the photo, it’s the person behind it.