Capturing the Perfect Shot -> Embrace the Mood

A moody day in WY gives a glorious sunset

So, it’s another chilly day here in FL. The big blast up North has brought a front down here which makes me dream of hot cocoa, big fuzzy socks and photography. You see it’s a bit dreary out there today and a lot people with a camera get totally bummed when the sunshine goes behind the clouds. I’m the exact opposite. I love the changing moods of the weather since each one gives me the unique opportunity to take a different kind of shot. If you embrace the weather, your photographic horizons can open up dramatically. Here’s a couple of examples of what to do on the darker days:

4/ Look for rays of Light – When the sky is dark and ominous, sometimes you get a ray of light peeking through which illuminates your foreground. Some of the coolest contrast comes when the sky is dark and your front is bathed in light. It’s a photographers dream.

Magic moment of morning mist in Iowa. My exposure compensation was -0.7

2/ Go Misty – The early morning, when dew is recent and mist is coming off the ground is a perfect time to get that “moody” shot which won’t be as interesting later on. Mist tends to “white out” your automatic camera settings (i.e. picture looks way too white), which is a result of how your camera calculates exposure. so there’s something called “exposure compensation” (normally a +/- button on your camera) which can help to darken the shot and keep that moody feel. Set your exposure to -0.7 and see how the picture changes.

3/ Go Small – when the sun is diffuse it’s a great time to focus on the little stuff. Sometimes that eerie light can give a kind of “glow” to the things on the ground and a nice, soft light for flowers. So, when the sky turns grey, look below for your treasures.

Diffuse light was perfect for this shot

4/ Take a Portrait – Believe it or not some of the best light for portraits is a soft, diffuse light. When I was doing professional photography I used to actively seek this light for my family photos. So, when the light is soft, zoom in and take those portraits.

4/ Wait for sunset – A lot of times a “moody” day can give a really cool sunset. Lots of clouds can make for brilliant colors as the setting sun reflects against the cloud layer. If you have a “sunset” setting on the camera try it at this time. The “sunset” setting tends to darken and saturate the shot which really brings out those deep, gorgeous colors.

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  1. Jim says

    Nice pictures. You really have talent in photography. The dog could not look happier. You can just feel his bliss from that picture. The flower silhouette is beyond amazing.

    Our maiden voyage to Ocala Silver River (#22) was excellent. Great weather and an excellent campground.

    • libertatemamo says

      Thank you so much for the lovely comment! And I’m SOOOO happy you enjoyed Silver River. We really liked that campground -> so much open space & really a bit of a hidden gem. Still can’t get over the fact that we ended up in the same site :) Glad your maiden voyage was a success! Nina

  2. Lauren Brown says

    Hi Nina and Paul,

    Always so enjoy your photos. This collection is especially appealing. Thanks.

    And I hope you’re staying warm down there! I hear it’s a bit chilly!


    • libertatemamo says

      Thanks Lauren. We’re just managing w/ the chill..:) Not as bad as up North mind you. Thinking of you and the family. Hope you have a wonderful Christmas! Nina


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