In the southeast we have mild winters compared to the north and cold winters compared to the deep south. The advantage is we get a little bit of both weather patterns. Yesterday we had high humidity at night with temperatures right at the freezing mark. The result was a fantastic opportunity for frost photographs like the one below.
I shot this with my Leica M8 and a 90mm f/2.8 lens on f/4 at 1/90 second, handheld, at the closest focus. The beauty of a rangefinder is the ability to do this. Had I thought in advance, my tripod would have been with me. However, I was bringing our children to school and the tripod was not on my mind.
I took this shot and several dozen more at about 8:30am EST. I found a small water collection basin on a large piece of commercial property nestled in the trees. The sun was warming the air around the water, but not directly as the trees were blocking the sun’s direct rays. The combination gave me a fog across the pond and shelter to keep the frost intact.
While you cannot tell here, the frost crystals on all of these shots are intricate and very detailed. The best part of this type of photography is the contrast and grading tones throughout the image. The frost highlights the shape of the leaves and provides extreme detail in an otherwise smooth medium.
Don’t miss a chance this winter to get out and find some unique opportunities. Remember that weather can turn an ordinary dull subject into something unique and spectacular. Weather is never the same twice.
Several things I learned here: a) keep the tripod in the trunk, no matter what!, b) I really need that macro lens!