Photographing Winters Wonderland

The Mystical Tree, taken during an ice storm during this winter season 2016-17

Photographing Winter’s Wonderland

 

Grand daughter Emmy!

As a child growing up, I always looked upon winters as a time of wonder: snow days off school, and family times during the holidays ; along with all the surprise and excitement the winter weather and holidays can bring. All those mysteries still enchant this time of season, and I having aged and gone through many a winter I have had a renewed awe about this time of renewal for the nature around us. My new fascination during the winter has been started by my desire to take photographs, and in the colder months there are times and situations where we can find scenes that can only be found during this time of the year. Among other things, taking family photographs while all the family are together and available for portraits,

Jordan, our Grandson! 2016 Christmas

and candids of the festive happenings that surround this thankful time of year. You can’t replace the surprise and excitement of children during Christmas gift giving or the first flakes of snow that might fall; and how proud the men and woman are when they get that big whitetail buck or turkey around the Thanksgiving season.

I like taking pictures of Christmas trees, and their lights and ornaments that adorn them. During a family tree trimming night is a good opportunity to take great family photos too. The ornament photographs and family photos can be turned into Christmas cards, or invitations or given as gifts for family and friends. I was playing around  and taking some images of a red string of beads to come up with a real interesting looking photograph I turned into a Christmas card one year, along with some spring flowers in an early spring snow, and some berries adorned with snow. They really turned out well by using a photo publishing company, ==== to make them up using predesigned templates. Then I got a batch of each printed off, which I used to send to family and a couple friends. It feels really awesome to take a photograph we took and making it into something useful, besides just a picture in an album or to hang on the wall. 

Well now that I got off topic, you can see that winter gives photographs a different and more intriguing look than might be gotten other times of the year.  Snow and Ice just turns images into magical, inspiring and memorable photographs people will take notice of. Mainly the times I tend to go out looking to take new photographs during winter is when it has snowed, or we get some ice to cover both trees, and other subjects in glistening magic wonder. We have had a few of those awesome snow and ice days in Cumberland Maryland, USA so far this winter. When we had our first freezing rain event, so far, I kept my sights on whatever I could find to make some amazing photographs of. By looking around at home, I found some icicles hanging from the table on our porch, that I created the image to the right from. Everything was dripping with icicles and if  hadn’t thought  to look under the table, which is a metal mesh top table, I would have never found the bottom contained a whole mess of icicles growing like a maze of hanging glass. I just had to make a record of this unusual, and possibly rare sight, for posterity. God has blessed us with the amazing properties in nature so we get to see amazing sights that give us pleasure, and that we get to record for others to see and enjoy. That is the most important part for me, is sharing my images and photographs with others, such as you all.

Wiliam Neilf, a writer and photographic contributor for “Outdoor Photographer”, has it all too right when he says, “give yourself the assignment of producing a winter portfolio of new images, Get out to your favorite local woods, lake or stream where you can return often in various weather and light. Working locally will give you many more opportunities to be out there after a fresh snow or a hard freeze when ice is everywhere.”  Plus for me, it keeps me close to family and friends, and gives more time to write these pages to share with you and others. Keep this all in mind when you are couped-up during these winter month’s, and get out for a photo-shoot at your local parks, the woods, by streams, rivers and lakes, by the bay; and even while out walking around town, or going shopping. I stop many a time on the way to the local Walmart or even take some in there parking lot. The store is on a hills & on the other sides of valleys you see the hills rolling of into the horizon.

Winter Wonder Land at Country Club Mall

Taking candids of people during winter can be made real interesting by the types of attire we wear, and the exciting things people do during winter;  skating, sliding, snow boarding, skiing, and making snow angels are some of the fun things I know of that I really would like to get some pictures of. They can really make for mind stimulating images that almost puts you in those peoples shoes, and make you wish you were doing that same thing by seeing the images, and even imagine the feelings you’d be getting while participating in those same activities.

I think the next assignment I am going to make for myself is to take pictures of how people deal with, handle, and utilize the winter weather events the rest of this winter. This being a time of renewal for nature, it is also a time of practically hibernation for some of us humans, but it can also be exciting and refreshing to get out in the cold, crisp air, and have some fun getting in the mix of. all the excitement during winter events.  When I was out taking pictures of Christmas lights, and this scene of the nativity at the Masonic church in Cumberland, where we live, it was a cold and windy evening. My sweetheart, Janet, and I went out together to have some quality time looking and taking pictures of the holiday season scenes. Part of the time I was taking my shots, she sat in the car to stay warm, and I can’t blame her. I get hurrying to grab what shots I can get when I go out and it is that cold, you can barely stand it.

Checkout the article,       , from last year for tips on dressing right, and preparing for outings of long winter exposure to get those eye catching and exhilarating photographs we all like looking at. If anyone is, or knows of someone selling winter clothing or photographic accessories that help with different seasons of photo opportunities, or ones to enhance the equipment we have and advertising for a percent of sales, we’d be willing to provide banners, links, and ads to promote good products. 

Contact me at: tonyb@advancedcompletephotography.com                                                     Or call: cell, 443-852-6550 ask for Tony, to discuss details and get the ball rolling to boost sales for us both, and make life easier for other readers. 

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My real passion is shots depicting nature and all it’s splendor. One morning during our beautiful ice display God handed us, I was walking down a small hill and right there off of RT220 was this tree draped in ice, and looking like it was right out of a fairytale book, at least after my post editing work was finished. The scene just seems like it needs a troll hanging out under this unusual looking tree. That day different type scenes abounded just about everywhere I went. I was actually trying to find a clear un-obtsructed spot along the road to take a picture of the hillside with the ice glistening in the trees. 

Don’t you hate wires that seem to always be right in the framing of some great roadside shots??I can’t seem to shake those pesky ole wires. It’s like electric people situate them just to screw up photographers chances of finding a clear place through the trees or buildings, and wires, that line the town areas and the highways.

During my search that day, I not only found the fairytale tree, I came across evergreen trees lined up in a row, with ice on them that looked like snow, not 50ft back up the hill, and 25ft from the road, as I walked back up to where I parked the car. This photograph just reminds me of the Christmasy feeling and I had to take a picture of them. Another one of those Christmas card images I like using for making new cards for the season. I was able to master getting a well framed image right there from the edge of the road. Goes to show you, you don’t have to get off the beaten path to find really nice photographs in the outdoors. You just have to open your eyes and your mind to the beauty and wonder in God’s world that is all around us that we take for granted much of the time. 

While you look around you frame things in your mind. Look for scenes that look promising, and then look for small things or groups of things that merit showing your friends and family what you saw and discovered while basking in natures vastness. Even on the edge of the road, or the edge of a field or yard is minute wonders that can warrant getting images of. You can start with small things and then look at the big picture, or start with a landscape and work down to some smaller subjects: a single tree covered in snow, or a branch covered in snow or ice. They can all be used to create a photograph by framing the images in ways that draw the eye to part of the empty space in the frame, or to an interesting part of the scene that you want to draw the viewers eyes to. The skies the limit! No pun intended. 

Remember to dress warm, to take the time out in the weather more comfortable. When you feel somewhat warm your mind can concentrate more on taking those magnificent photographs that the time spent deserves. 

*Check out our link to find winter clothes and accessories, if you are in need of them*                                                        **Also, we are an affiliate for most of the ads that you might see associated with with our site. Affiliates are compensated when you either click-on, or happen to buy something from these ads. You are in no way obligated to do so, but we appreciate it if you are in the market for anything we advertise.*

***We’d like to announce an affiliate relationship we now have with http://smugmug.com , which is a safe way to store, and even sell your images from a website you can create without knowing code. They have a great feature that if someone tries to right-click your images to copy them and they get a total white blank space. Cool huh. 

Stay warm and keep on shooting!   @Tony B. (writer, photographer)  

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