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Project 52 Week 7: “Natural Light”

Welcome to week 7 of the Pet Photography Project 52 Week Challenge and to the week we finally got 2 snowstorms here in New England – wooohoo!!!  I was excited to work with both snow and natural light this week!  And guess what?  Kota was more than happy to take part as she has been in her element and loving this white, fluffy stuff!

I owe my light obsession to Jill Flynn of Visual Harmony Photography.  About a year and a half ago I took her on-line Pet Photography class with the Bryan Peterson School of Photography.  I learned so much in that fours weeks!  Jill dedicates a week’s chapter to understanding and learning about both natural and artificial light.  When going out to shoot in Jill’s “natural light” assignment, these were a few of her words: “Use light creatively, be imaginative, tell a story if you like, capture the spirit… make it personal.”  I later did a mentorship with her… and ever since then, I’ve always been searching for my “perfect” light!

When IS the best light for outdoor shooting?  According to Photographer Bryan Peterson in his book, “Understanding Exposure“, “the best light occurs those times of day when you would rather be sleeping (early morning) or sitting down with family or friends for dinner (later afternoon/early evening, especially in summer).  In other words, shooting in the best light can be disruptive to your “normal” schedule”.  This is so true!!!    He states that the light these times of day, “reveal textures, shadows, and depth in warm and vivid tones”.  Perfect to take advantage of!

The photos I am sharing are outdoors in natural light.  This first one was taken the morning after our first “blizzard” of the year that left about 10-12 inches on the ground.  The storm had ended overnight and the morning was planned to be a sunny one.  I set the alarm to 7:00 AM (yup, I admit, that’s early for me!)  I headed out with my mug of hot coffee and camera – this time Caribou Medium Roast (coffee lover has to throw that in).  It was a beautiful winter wonderland!!!  Here the sun was just above our 6 foot fence over my left shoulder.  I took this at f2.2 to get the bokeh with the stunning oranges and yellows from the sun.


Kota Morning Light Orange 1 of 1
Morning Light


The next photo is taken the same morning.  This time the light was coming from my right shoulder and Kota was toward the back of our fence.


Kota Focus on snow 1 of 1
Snow Fun


Snowstorm #2 just a few days later!  Yay!  This one gave us another 12 inches making it about 2 feet total.  Perfect for more snow pics.  I got my wish!

This first one was taken at 9:22 AM.  This morning was a bit on the cloudy side.  No direct sunlight but snow can make a great reflector!


Kota Snow Frame 1 of 1
Snow Covered Branches

And my last photo here was taken the day after the 2nd snowstorm.  Here we had bright sunlight throughout the day.  I waited until 4PM and the light was perfect!  Kota’s location is the same as the 2nd photo but here the light was behind my left shoulder.


Kota on snow evening 1 of 1
Squirrel Watching


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20 thoughts on “Project 52 Week 7: “Natural Light””

    1. Thanks, Kelly! Winter weather has been crazy – last year we had nothing and the year before it was never ending snow! 🙂 As long as it’s cold, I love snow on the ground!

  1. I know I have one snow dog who is for sure jealous of all that snow you’ve got!

    My favorite image from this week is Kota peeking over those snow-covered branches. The white balance and framing is spot-on!

    1. I’m sure Hunter LOVES the snow!!! 🙂 That’s where I struggle with snow pics – the white balance – and I do agree! The snow covered branches seems to have the best white balance! Thank you!

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