With some light snow on and off and occasional 10 minute snow storms throughout the day, we learned quickly that we couldn’t move anything on the table set up. If we did, you could easily see were we had disturbed the snow, which would have to involve more postproduction work in photoshop. A lesson in making sure its right the first time! With several set ups in various spots and with cold temperatures I wanted to keep the lighting portable and simple. Speedlights with some simple modifiers were the way to go. As we know, proper exposure can be tricky on the snow. A little over exposure kept the snow a crisp white, I found about +2/3 of a stop seemed to do the trick. You also have to consider your white balance, especially if you want to consider submitting your images to a magazine as they always look for color consistency. We had to consider how our images are going to look when we shot in natural light, with flash, in sunlight, in the shadows of evergreens, in a snowstorm, etc. The white balance was changing constantly. Looking back we wish we would have had the expo disk to make the job easier for post production. Facing all these challenges of shooting in the snow you have to also make sure you’re shooting in RAW format.
Sun up till sun down, it was a long day. We had two awesome table set-ups, an amazing ice bar, a gorgeous cake and the models. All this had to be shot between warming up! Being a wedding photographer, I find myself at complete ease during creative shoots. You just don’t get this kind of time and control at a wedding.
Winter shoots seldom seem to have a game plan set in stone. You find yourself shooting between set ups quickly, all according to the weather. If this is something your willing to take on, the biggest words of advice we have for you is to surround yourself with good vendors. Good, experienced people make a world of difference. Happy shooting my friends.