Tuesday, 2 October 2012

Shooting in the Rain

We have all been in a situation like this: you get to a prominent tourist spot ready to make some classic images. And it rains. Disappointment as you only have a day so so there and it looks like the rain has set in. This happened to me as we rolled into Florence. Muggy weather, then a downpour. I was stuck on the bridge to had to wait for 30 mins before I could move. Still got wet but the important thing to note is that if you can shoot evening or night shots, the rain does not show up. Or at the very least, it softens the tones nicely. 
Day two and the weather did the same. The rain was cruising past the hotel door in a horizontal fashion for about 30 mins, then the storm passed and Wow, the light was fantastic. Huge clouds, a dying sun and terrific light. 
So many photographers take one look and stay indoors but, as often as not, the photo opportunities right after a short, sharp storm are impressive. 
I loved the results I got - all HDR of course but the dram in the sky was well worth getting a bit soggy. TIP: Always take either the shower cap from the hotel bathroom or a plastic shopping bag to cover the camera when it gets really wet...

Shooting in the rain CAN produce really average results. Use HDR (bracketed images assembled into an HDR image using HDR software like Photomatix Pro) to beef up the tones and produce a truly impressive visual result (below).
Shot in the pouring rain from the relative shelter of a covered walkway to the left of the Ponte Veccio. Not a bad result considering the conditions. I left the White Balance on Auto as it produced some nice colour in an otherwise very drab looking scene (to the naked eye at least)...

Day two, after the storm, there was a bit of a sunset but that does not appear in this HDR - but what I did get were the three boats moored in the lower right hand side of the scene. The river Arno is amazingly still considering this is a 3 frame HDR shot processed using Photomatix Pro

My favourite, of course. Florence's magnificent Ponte Veccio. HDR processed in Photomatix Pro

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