A while ago I was speaking to a photographer friend about the best times for landscape photography. This conversation was place unspecific, by that I mean not being dependent on the right time of day/year to photograph a specific place. And we both agreed that two important times were when a weather front was either coming or going. Both of these often give dramatic lighting and atmospheric conditions. This shot I took last Thursday was one of those – when the weather was changing for the better.
I´d driven down to Chiemsee, the biggest Bavarian lake, last Thursday to hopefully capture one of these “weather change” events. The drive started off with snow showers, low clouds and a cold wind. When I arrived there it was still cold, grey and windy but the weather forecast had said it would brighten later. I´d already chosen the place, Seebruck, at the North end of the lake, with a view across the water to the Bavarian Alps. The landing pier for the pleasure steamers was also to be an important feature in the shot. I set up my camera on the rather wet edge of the lake. The clouds started to clear and, because of the fresh wind, were moving quite quickly. To compensate for the brighter sky I used a Lee 0.6 ND soft grad. filter and, to soften both water and clouds, a Lee little stopper filter to increase the exposure time. The exposure was 15 seconds. I processed the RAW shot using Capture One Pro, but this time, instead of doing the black and white conversion direct in Capture One, I exported a Photoshop file and did the work using Silver Effects 2 in Photoshop.
Of course one drawback in going for these times of weather change is that you will have to put up with uncomfortable conditions at either the beginning or end of your shoot. If you´re somewhere were this may have serious consequences, in the mountains, for example, you should bear that in mind.