Here we are then, the next exciting instalment about my snow sessions (this post refers). And I’ve just about reached the conclusion that I’ve forsaken all claim to sanity, or anything remotely resembling it.
For, in the absence of anything better to do, having spewed out my inner thoughts regarding whether or not I’d be foolish enough to decide to wander out this morning (um… yesterday morning probably, by the time I post this… Thursday, that would be) for yet another batch of snow pics I then found myself becoming increasingly preoccupied by the idea.
Playing through, in my mind, the various preparations required for the adventure the thoughts almost seamlessly and unnoticed transformed themselves into actions and hey presto, there I was, all kitted up and ready to go.
So I did.
Well, I managed to trudge about halfway to my destination when it suddenly dawned on me that, despite my having thought through all the preparations, I’d still managed to overlook one vitally important bit of kit… the lens sleeve!
For those that don’t already know, my particular lens sleeve is an invaluable and highly technical item designed to seal the lens against the ingress of moisture… essentially its a plastic freezer bag with the bottom cut off, fixed with a couple of hair bands! My first experiment with it wasn’t terribly successful (the sad details in this post) but I’ve used it a few times since then and it works fine.
So I wasted the next 25 yards or so mulling over whether I should go back for it or not. After all, I was carrying the mini-brolly with me to try out and surely that would keep the moisture off. Wouldn’t it?
But finally decided its better to err on the side of safety, so about-turned and trudged back home again.
Lens sleeve securely affixed, off I set once more, following a strange set of footprints in the snow that looked suspiciously like mine, toward my intended destination… pretty much the middle of a field. (Why do I always seem to end up in fields? I have to ask myself.)
And in the process re-learned something else I’d forgotten… just how tiring it can be wading through thick snow. Good exercise for the old ticker though I suppose. As some equally lunatic person I happened across in the field remarked to me (not that lunatic maybe… a lady walking her dog actually).
Time to set up then, and give this umbrella jobbie a go. When I suddenly remembered why I’d given up on the idea last time I tried it.
Its a bit… er… awkward. Just about works if one’s hand-holding the camera, but its a real pain when using a tripod… certainly fixed the way I was using it at least. Maybe if I could rig up some sort of gubbins to actually attach it to the tripod there’d be some mileage in it. Hmm.
Anyway, umbrella shoved back in pocket I relied exclusively on the lens sleeve to protect against the still lightly falling snow. Thank heaven the camera itself is waterproof.
(At this point I was gonna waste a para or two singing the praises of the GX10, which is fast becoming my stalwart friend. But changed my mind cos if I did I’d probably jinx it.)
And then set about the clicky business. The first batch of shots were a complete waste, cos the lighting was abyssmal. It was still just barely light (no street lights here in the middle of the field… dunno why; but then, if there were I suppose they’d be called “field lights”) and whilst normally that wouldn’t bother me overmuch the snow played havoc with the white balance… or so I thought!
Didn’t realise it at the time of course, but discovered it very rapidly once I came to processing the pics. No matter how much I tweaked and tinkered in Lightroom I just couldn’t seem to re-create the scene as I remembered it. They all looked just… well… horrible. So I ditched the lot of them.
The next batch were somewhat better, even though the day appeared to have only marginally lightened. Clearly sufficient though I still can’t say I’m overly impressed by any of them.
And my stupidity constantly amazes me. For knowing snow’s white I’d convinced myself that my snow had to be white. And spent hours upon hours, literally, trying to achieve precisely that.
Process a batch, sweat blood and tears over them, upload them to Flickr.. and they’re all rubbish. So delete the lot and start again.
Did that four times! And when I did manage to get the snow itself properly white, the rest of it looked totally wrong.
Then this morning (Friday) it snowed yet again (and yep, I’ve got even more pics to sort through!). And so I made a point of closely observing the colour of the snow, the sky, and pretty much everything else. Not what I thought it should be, or “know” it to be, but how it actually appears. And realised that at that time in the morning (and I’m talking early here) snow doesn’t look white at all! It looks blueish, or cyanish, or its greyish, depending upon what the sky’s doing and how far advanced the morning actually is. One thing its definitely not is white… nor are the surroundings for that matter. Snow doesn’t get to appear really white until later in the day, and then only if the sky/light is “right”.
Bloody idiot! So back to the drawing board once again, and basically simply go with what I originally had.
I dunno… I’m not at all certain I’m really cut out for this photography lark.
Anyway, I’ve now come to the conclusion that I much prefer shooting snow when its sunny and there’s a bit of colour in the pics, rather than this early-morning manky off-white type stuff.