Wanderlust by Jona

Travel. Wanderlust. Blog. Photographer. Amanda Jona. Explore. Adventure. World. Traveller

How to Photograph in the Cold Winter

And once again the temperature is below zero and snow lay on the ground in Stockholm.
This is really the part I hate most about winter when the temperature swings between -5° to +5°, leaving both wet slushes from the snow everywhere and dangerous ice spots where you can slip and fall (a lot of broken bones this time of the year!). I have never gone on a skiing trip and the only time I actually travel to a colder place is when I'm visiting family in northern Sweden. 
What I'm trying to say is that I'm not very fond of either snow or the cold, but I have to agree that it can look really beautiful on camera! Therefore, I've gathered my best tips in this post on how to photograph in the cold winter!
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❄️  Dress warm
Quite obvious, but you really don't want to miss a photo opportunity because of something as ridiculous as being cold.
❄️  Charge the batteries
Batteries do not feel well in the cold and die faster. Therefore, be sure to have fully charged batteries when you get out or bring an extra battery if you are going to be out for a long time.
❄️  Wear thin gloves
I love my thick mittens, but they are very impractical when you want to change the camera settings. Therefore, I always wear a pair of thin gloves under my thick mittens so I can take off the mittens when I have to use my fingers without getting cold.
❄️  Be careful with the camera equipment
Many materials become weaker when it's cold, including plastic. Many of the camera's parts consist of plastic so be careful when handling your camera in the cold so nothing breaks.
❄️  Shoot manually
The camera does not work as well as the human eye and will underexpose images with a lot of white snow on auto mode since it's "too bright". Learn how to shoot manually and your photos of snow will be as white as reality.
❄️  Catch the snowflakes
Can't you see how much it snows in your photographs? Be sure to have a short shutter speed and a large aperture to capture the flakes, and/or use a light flash to light them up.
❄️  Use the backlight
During the winter up here in the north, the sun is not as high in the sky and does not shine as strong as in the summer = perfect opportunity to photograph with beautiful backlight!
❄️  Beware of condensation
Have you seen someone wearing glasses go inside after being outside in the cold? Their glasses will condensate and the same thing happens to your camera lens if you bring it in immediately. Condense is moisture and if you're unlucky it can get inside your camera and ruin it. To avoid this you should leave your camera in the camera bag for a while when you get inside so it can slowly get used to the room temperature.
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Helsinki Cathedral - Helsinki, Finland

 Helsinki Cathedral is such a distinctive part of the Helsinki cityscape.
Just google Helsinki and you find this majestic building in pretty much every picture. It is also one of Helsinki's most visited buildings with almost 350 000 visitors annually. The cathedral, who is called Helsingin tuomiokirkko in Finnish, was completed in 1852 and is still used regularly for religious services and weddings and has the compacity of 1300 people.
The white exterior with the green domes really appeals to me, but I have to admit that the interior wasn't blowing me away. I think I had imagined the interior to be a little bit more like St. Peter's Basilica in Vatican City, so I was surprised that everything was pretty simple and white. Although, I can just imagine how pretty it must be to get married in here! I've worked as a wedding photographer and can with experience say that it would be easy shooting beautiful and bright wedding photos in this environment ;)
Read more about my trip to Helsinki
Quick facts about Helsinki Cathedral
Name: Helsingin tuomiokirkko
Opened: 1852
Visitors: 350 000 annually
Entrance fee: No entrance fee
Location: Unioninkatu 29, Helsinki
Opening hours: Open daily 9 am–6 pm, June–August 9 am–midnight. Sightseeing visits are not possible during church ceremonies.
My rating: 
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Travel Diary: Mälarhöjden, Sweden

Sometimes you don't have to travel far to explore new places.
This weekend, the sun shined in Stockholm for the first time in forever so I decided to take a walk with my camera and get to know my brand new tripod - and ended up being out for almost four hours. My goal was to reach the water in Mälarhöjden but instead of taking the quickest way there, I just went wandering about, exploring every street and trail I could find and ended up finding some amazing lookout points on the way.
This is honestly my favourite way of exploring the world, by getting lost in it. And isn't it amazing that you can live in a city for almost 22 years, and still find new places in it every single day?