Do you want to create a special atmosphere at the photo session with the help of dramatic pouring rain or fabulous fluffy snow? Or were you unexpectedly caught by precipitation while working in the open air?
You need to prepare for bad conditions when shooting outdoors so as not to break the equipment and squeeze the maximum out of the situation. We tell you how to protect the camera during bad weather, as well as minimize the risks when shooting in the cold.
Shooting in the snow — life hacks and subtleties
Snowfall can add magic and coziness to a shot, or create an atmosphere of cold hopelessness and aloofness. These are the conditions that you want to use to make the frame more interesting.
Snowfall itself is relatively safe for the camera. But moisture is dangerous. So the snow is harmless until it starts to melt or gets stuck in the camera parts, from which it is difficult to sweep it out. For example, in the hot shoe connector, on which the flash and synchronizer are attached.
The most important thing when shooting in the snow is to make sure that it does not melt on the camera, and also to go into the premises, get into the car or put the camera in a case only after the equipment is completely cleared of snow. This can be done with gloved hands, or use a dust blower and a brush from the optics cleaning kit. Avoid blowing the snow off with your breath or removing it with your fingers, as this will melt it.
Pay special attention to the hot shoe, buttons where snow can get stuck in their slots, and the lens. Especially if the lens is zoomed — when approaching or moving away, its parts can extend and rotate. At this point, snow can stick to it, which then gets deep into the structure.
How to protect your camera from snow
If you want to additionally insure yourself so that you don’t have to pay for camera repairs later, then the equipment should be isolated from snowfall as much as possible. This is especially important if you are shooting in sleet and sleet, when precipitation melts instantly, increasing the risk of damaging your camera.
– Protect the lens with a lens hood or protective filter (read how to choose a filter).
Use the lens hood during snowfall to keep it from sticking to the optics, or turn it upside down to protect the “body” of the lens. The first will insure you from snow adhering to the lens.
Attach a protective filter to the lens to prevent moisture from getting on the lens of the lens. This is not as dangerous as moisture that gets into the moving parts of the lens, but there may be stains, droplets that will have to be removed in post-processing. With a protective filter, snow can be quickly shaken off without worrying that you will scratch expensive optics.
— Take pictures while standing under an umbrella. Please note that in this case you will need an assistant who will hold the umbrella over the camera, or prepare for inconvenience. You can safely hold an umbrella over the camera if you put it on a tripod (for how to choose a tripod and its main characteristics, read this text). Then you don’t have to hold both the umbrella and the camera at the same time.
— Wrap the camera in a raincoat or the most common bag. In the case of a fixed lens, you can also protect it, and additionally wrap it with tape on top so that the home-made waterproof cover does not move out.
– Always point the camera with the lens down to reduce the amount of snow that can get on the lens.
Shooting in winter — how to protect the camera from the cold
In winter, photographic equipment is threatened not only by potentially melted snow, but also by cold. We have collected life hacks on how to secure the camera while shooting in the cold and thereby extend the life of the camera.
- Avoid condensation.
Condensation inside the chamber may form due to temperature fluctuations. For example, you took a couple of shots in the cold, got into the car, and after a couple of minutes went back into the cold. Avoid such situations and do not try to hide the camera in heat as soon as there is a pause.
- Don’t breathe on the lens.
It may seem very simple to clear the lens of snow by breathing on it and brushing off the moisture. But, even if you shoot with a protective filter, this can have a bad effect on the quality of the shooting. Frost can form on the glass, or the same condensate can form, which will make the picture dull and low-contrast.
- Do not turn on the camera as soon as you return to the room from the cold.
Condensation can form in this way, which is harmful to equipment. It is best to let the chamber warm up gradually. To do this, leave it in the case or photo backpack in which you brought it from the cold for a couple of hours.
6 Ways to Protect Your Camera When Shooting in the Rain
Shooting in the rain is always spectacular. Wet hair, slanting drops in the background, playing with reflections in puddles. These are unique conditions during which you can get really unusual and rare shots. We figure out how to photograph in the rain to protect photographic equipment from moisture.
- Buy a waterproof protective case.
This is the best way, albeit not the cheapest. The design of the case will fully protect all the elements of your camera — from the “carcass” to the lens of the lens. Sealed finger indentations are provided for pressing the shutter button, as well as turning the focus or zoom ring. This waterproof case can even be used underwater!
Before buying, consider a few points:
— The case will protect the camera from any moisture, but you need to get used to shooting with it. Turning the focus ring can be quite difficult, as well as looking into the viewfinder through the material of the case.
– Carefully study the dimensions of the camera and the lens with which you will take pictures in the case. Some manufacturers indicate compatibility with certain cameras that are similar in size. For example, the Flama FL-WP-S5 case. It doesn’t stretch and comes in one universal size, so you need to have a good understanding of what optics can fit in the case with your camera. In one case, you will have a large margin, and you can even change the focal length, and in the other, your zoom lens will “turn” into a prime, since there will be no room left in the case. For example, with such a cover it will hardly be possible to shoot on a telephoto.
– Read the instructions before shooting underwater. The case has a certain number of meters that you can dive with it. For example, the Flama FL-WP-570 case protects your equipment at a depth of up to 10 meters.
2. Hide! It is not necessary to run into the thick of bad weather. You can stay under a canopy, take pictures from a room or an open car window.
2. Shoot under an umbrella. To make it easier for yourself, take a tripod so you don’t have to hold the camera and umbrella at the same time, or find an assistant.
3. Wrap your camera in a raincoat, raincoat, or jacket. The main thing is to choose a material that does not get wet.
4. Build a homemade protective case from the bag. Please note that it will obviously lose in tightness to a purchased case. In addition, rain is much more dangerous than snow. If you can simply shake off the snow in the cold, then it will not work so easily with drops. Therefore, just in case, take with you microfiber cloths and cloths that absorb moisture well.
5. Put on the lens hood and protective filter to protect the lens from drops.