Photography Cheat Sheet: How to Protect Your Camera in Cold Weather

‘Tis the season for shooting winter scenes, so take some useful tips from today’s photography cheat sheet for protecting your gear from the cold!

We’re sure many of you will be heading out to spend the holidays in winter wonderlands, and will definitely be busy shooting. As a reminder to keep your precious gear in perfect working condition, we’re sharing some helpful tips from Canon in their quick photography cheat sheet. Make sure to take a look and take notes while you’re getting ready!

A few months ago, we shared some essential tips for shooting in cold weather since winter was coming and it’s no joke to shoot in freezing temperatures. A follow-up to that is this photography cheat sheet from Canon, which is part of their tutorial on protecting your precious gear during cold weather photography.

Canon’s tips in this quick photography cheat sheet are divided into three parts; before, during, and after the shoot. When preparing for a cold weather shoot, make sure to bring; spare batteries, as batteries discharge quicker in cold weather; Ziploc bags for placing your gear in later, after the shoot; a lens blower to keep your lens clean. Make sure you use a waterproof camera backpack to protect and insulate your camera and lens/es while you’re out in the cold. Don’t forget to wear liners under your gloves so your fingers stay warm and comfortable throughout the shoot.

When you’re out shooting, it’s important to keep the extra batteries inside your jacket pocket or pants pockets (closest to your body). This will make sure they are warm when you put them in your camera. Never blow on your camera lens to remove dirt and/or snow: use the lens blower instead. Keep the lens cap on when you’re not shooting so frost doesn’t form on it.

As for shooting tips, Canon recommends incorporating elements or features in the environment that can serve as the focal point of your shot and add color to your scene. Since snowy scenes tend to be dominantly bright and white, keep an eye on the exposure compensation and increase it as necessary so your photo is properly exposed. Be on the lookout for interesting details that are unique to the season and location, such as icicles on a leaf, for best results.

Lastly, after the shoot, don’t forget to put your camera and lens into Ziplock bags while you’re still outdoors, so the moisture will form outside the bag. As also mentioned in the previous cold weather photography tips, you may also take out your memory card before putting the camera inside the Ziploc bags so you can edit your photos as soon as you’re indoors. If you were shooting in cold and dry conditions, put your camera beside the window so it acclimates slow and steady.

Don’t forget to check out our collection of photography cheat sheets so far more photography tips and tricks like these!

Cover photo by Vivienne Gucwa. Used with permission from a previous feature.