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Winter Photography Tips

We had a little preview of winter in mid-October followed by a little bit of summer, but I think winter is here to stay this time. At least for the next six months. So here are some things to remember while taking photos during Minnesota's coldest months.


All of that white fluffy stuff can trick your camera's metering system, leaving your photos looking gray and underexposed. If the scene is overcast, try overexposing your photo by +1 f-stop. For bright sun, you may need +2 f-stops, being careful not to blow out your whites and lose details in the scene. When in doubt, bracket shots by one to two stops over and under your initial exposure setting. Use your view screen to determine the correct exposure.

If your camera has one, use the exposure warning feature, overexposed areas blinking on your preview screen. It's OK to have some small, very bright areas, but you don't want the entire snowscape or sky to be overexposed.


A polarizer filter can make a dramatic difference in reducing the glare on snow and ice.


The autofocus on our cameras rely on contrasts for a good focus. White on white offers little for the camera to focus on. For a sharper image, use your single-point focus mode or use manual focus.


Be sure to bundle up. Carry heat packs in your pockets to warm frozen fingers. Use Yaktrax or something similar for better traction on ice and snow. We don't want to see any broken bones this winter.


Keep your camera inside of your coat until your ready to shoot. Keep your batteries warm, they can lose power quickly when exposed to low temperatures. Bring some extra batteries just in case.

Carry an air blower to blow snowflakes off your lenses. Brushing away flakes with your hands may cause the snow to melt.

Don't let your lens fog up. Place your camera in a photo bag with the lens cover on before you enter anywhere warm and let it warm up inside the bag for at least a couple of hours before removing it from the bag

We hope these tips help. Above all, get outside and have some fun.

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