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Creative imagery in all weather conditions

By Assavri Kulkarni
Some photographers capture superb images in the worst weather conditions. Despite the common perception that beautiful images captured during bad weather is a matter of sheer luck, the fact remains that it is possible to do so and all one needs is the knowhow.
When weather changes from bright to dull, visually interesting layers are created by the uneven light conditions, which lend images a dramatic effect.
Light and shadow are the prime factors photographers have to keep in mind. Sudden rays of light peeping from behind grey clouds can create a spotlight effect on a mountain, tree, even a face, while rains can create reflections with shadows enabling the isolation of a subject. Fog or mist reduces contrast creating poetically dreamy moods.
All one needs in addition to the knowledge of how light and shadow play can be manipulated to photographic advantage is a very steady hand or tripod because in bad weather conditions light effects can change quickly. Fast shutter speed and long aperture can help you out in such situations as also the use of artificial lights can enable dramatic highlighting of images.
Beginners think the mid-day sun or clear blue skies afford good light. Add to it a stunning location and they believe the ultimate photographer’s dream has been realised. But the afternoon sunlight can also prove to be ‘bad weather’ and no matter how scenic the location the harsh afternoon light can shatter photographic hopes.
The ultimate truth then is that there is no perfect natural lighting. A photographer must learn how to make the best of what nature affords.
The second dimension to any visual experience is creativity. And if a photographer can incorporate this in images he will have added the soul to the image, irrespective of weather conditions.

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