Photography News 15



MASTERCLASS: WEATHER David Noton Throughout the competition we’ll be tapping into landscape shooter and Canon ambassador David Noton’s fount of expertise. This month’s theme of weather is a topic David could talk endlessly about

David’s top tips DIY COVER “A simple shower cap can be a really useful thing to just pop over the camera to keep it dry in a rain shower.” shooting to utilise these really dramatic skies then going quite wide can be a good thing to do. I use the Canon TS-E 17mm f/4L tilt-shift lens.” EARLY START “Winter weather in particular is fleeting because the snow and ice start to melt very quickly and can look a bit grubby, so that’s a difficult one to pull off and an early start is definitely needed because when it comes together it’s great.” “I don’t think it’s possible to try and second guess the weather too much, at the end of the day you’ve just got to go for it and capture TAKE A CHANCE SIMPLE COMPOSITION “The simplest pictures work the best, so if you’re photographing weather and it’s all about the drama in the sky then just keep all the elements simple and bold with nothing in the frame that doesn’t deserve to be there.” KEEP ITWIDE “If you’re going to be whatever Mother Nature gives you.”

ABOVE The mountains of Corsica captured during a misty rainstorm. CanonEOS5DMark III, Canon70-200mmf/2.8L IIUSM, 1/250secat f/5.6, ISO200. ABOVE RIGHT The Isle of Skye, the Inner Hebrides of Scotland. CanonEOS5DMark III, CanonTS-E17mmf/4L tilt-shift lens, 1/60secat f/14, ISO100.

“It is possible to predict when and where mist is likely to form, for example if rain is followed by clearing skies at the end of the day, clear skies overnight and then a big drop in temperature with still conditions, it’s almost certain that the following morning mist is going to lie over the damp landscape.” Weather apps can often be a useful shooting aid although as David says, they are great at telling you the weather you’re in but not always so reliable in predicting what’s coming. Indisputably though, the most important piece of equipment to take into consideration is your camera. “The weather sealing on my Canon EOS 5D Mark III is very good and that is very, very important because we need to use our cameras out in difficult conditions, we need to use them in the rain,” David emphasises. “There’s the old adage that the worst weather brings the best pictures and there’s some truth in that. We need to get out there in the pouring rain, the freezing cold, the high winds or the sea spray and that’s often when the best pictures come. They’re quite challenging conditions to work in photographically so weather sealing is crucial.” As for lenses, if David wants to make the most of a really dramatic sky he relies on a wide-angle such as the Canon TS-E 17mm f/4L tilt-shift lens. But for when the weather does take an unexpected turn a zoom lens is one of the most powerful tools you can have in your kitbag, able to capture a wide range of images for whatever the weather throws at you. “I remember shooting in the mountains of Corsica in the most heavy downpour,” recalls David. “Yet the cloud and mist clinging to the mountains around

We’re a nation obsessed with the weather and whilst most of the population bemoans the Great British climate, there’s a small cluster of people – best known as landscape photographers – who quite like it. Landscape photographers rely on the much grumbled about changeable nature of the weather, it’s what makes for some of the most dramatic and impactful shots. Our Camera Club of the Year masterclass expert David Noton naturally echoes that sentiment. “As a general rule, changeable weather is usually good for photography,” he begins. “It’s what we photographers hope for, that weather which either precedes or follows, for example, heavy rain. When there’s a front passing through and the rain is clearing you often get really dramatic skies, clear conditions and really interesting light, and of course visibility is usually good because all the haze has been flushed out of the atmosphere. Often what is forecast as bad weather can be just what we photographers want.” Having been in the business for almost 30 years, David has become attuned to a number of Mother Nature’s tells and is able to predict certain weathers, giving him a fairly accurate idea of what he will be able to capture on camera. “Mist is a phenomenon beloved by landscape photographers,” begins David.

us was incredibly dramatic, it was so angry and sombre.” In that situation, David fitted his 70-200mm lens to his Mark III. “I was using a longer lens and compressing the perspective to concentrate in on those clouds hanging in amongst the mountains.” One thing David advises is that skies can make or break landscapes. As David says: “The most interesting landscape in the world under bland blue or completely overcast sky is never really going to do it.” So wait for the clouds to roll in and prepare for a bit of rain to capture those unique and impactful weather-centric landscapes.

π To find out more, go to


Handily for us photographers, David Noton has put onto paper what makes a successful image in his new book The Vision . Get inside the mind of one of the

country’s best-loved landscape and travel

photographers to learn how David creates those winning images. It’s all illustrated with examples from David’s impressive back catalogue of work and can be bought from his website. π To find out more about David’s book, go to The_Vision.

Oftenwhat is forecast as badweather can be just what we photographerswant

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Photography News | Issue 15

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