A cloudy day is a good time for macro photography. This is an area where high contrast is rarely appropriate, while diffuse lighting makes the shooting process comfortable and controlled. It is worth mentioning that the color saturation large plans are generally superior deleted scenes, due to the decreasing role of atmospheric haze mutes the color, but also because of its abundance of colorful objects that we usually ignore because of their miniature size.
If the cloud weather can still impose some restrictions on landscape photography, then it can not interfere with the shooting of portraits in any way. Moreover, the soft diffused light is just perfect for quiet lyrical female portraits. This light masks skin defects, softens facial features, and provides smooth tonal gradients.
Portrait in cloudy weather
Black and white photography
I’m not very comfortable writing about this, but you should probably know the truth: sometimes converting to black and white allows you to save a mediocre picture from a completely hopeless gloom. The fact is that the main problem with many photos taken in cloudy weather is faded, expressionless colors. Remove the color completely, and the image will become much more aesthetic. This technique is hardly morally perfect, and I hope you will not use it too often. After all, a good black-and – white photograph is not just a color photograph devoid of color. This is a completely independent genre, in which other rules apply, and which requires the photographer to have an impeccable command of composition and lighting. I just want to say that if color photography, by its nature, inevitably suffers from a lack of color, then for black and white this factor is completely insignificant, and therefore it is in principle less vulnerable to the vagaries of the weather.
Museum of boulders in the fog
Bright daylight is considered to be the least successful light for photography. Excessive contrast challenges your camera’s dynamic range, coarsens detail, and burns out colors. Photos taken in the middle of the day often look boring and banal, even if they show something outstanding. However, if the photographic itch is unbearable, or you simply do not have time to wait for the Golden hour, then I can assure you that at noon you can successfully cope with the photographic need, showing only a little imagination.
Shoot in the shade
The easiest way to get soft lighting in Sunny weather is to move into the shade. Of course, this technique does not work with landscapes, but for shooting portraits, macro and various genre scenes, it is quite effective. Technically, shooting in the shade is not much different from shooting in cloudy weather, and there is no need to write about it particularly. Don’t forget to select the appropriate white balance, otherwise all images will be blue. In addition, when shooting in the shade, you should be especially careful not to get into the frame areas of the surrounding landscape, illuminated by direct sunlight: being much brighter than the scene being shot, they are highly likely to be overexposed. It is obvious that a long-focus lens is better suited for such tasks than a wide-angle one.
Portrait in the shadows
Against the light
If you can’t hide in the shadows, you can experiment with the background light. At first glance, this idea does not seem very successful (because the overall contrast of the scene will be simply monstrous), but in practice it justifies itself. The trick is that you photograph objects from the dark side against the background of equally dark elements of the landscape, exposing the exposure exactly by shadows. Since the sun shines on objects from behind, its presence in the frame is limited (with a successful composition, of course) by bright halos around objects. At the same time, the halos themselves can be overexposed without any scruples. Their purpose is to separate objects from the background and make the scene glow from the inside. Due to the fact that the sun is high enough in the sky, it is not difficult to avoid getting into the frame, but it is still very desirable to use the lens hood, in order to reduce the probability of parasitic illumination.
Portrait in the background light
By the way, the contour light is also appropriate in landscapes, especially if you have the opportunity to climb to some elevation and look at the scene a little down.
Flashes and reflectors
To reduce contrast, you can highlight shadows using a fill flash or a reflector. In fact, any light surface illuminated by the sun, such as a wall, can act as an improvised reflector. Snow, sand, and water reflect sunlight well.