Just before Christmas, visited the beautiful ski resort of St Christoph in Austria. As you can see from some of the photos I took, St Christoph offers some stunning views, backdrops and surroundings. I took my camera with me to try my hand at ski photography, as well as take some general wintery shots of the ski resort.
Hotel Maiensee | www.kimrixphotography.co.uk
Now, though it may not be possible to travel with a professional photographer, though I am available to travel abroad for your family and ski photography, this doesn’t mean that you can’t capture stunning portraits that uniquely represent your time on the slopes.
I have listed my top five tips to help you create beautiful, timeless ski photography that you can use your time to reminisce your winter holiday.
1. Avoid underexposure.
Ski photography usually means shooting in harsh, bright conditions. Not only does the sun reflect off of the snow and ice, you also have to compete with the brightness of the sky, meaning that you will have to overcompensate. You will be able to capture the best shots during the beginning or the end of the day, when the light is less harsh, and the sun isn’t in full view. With the sun lower in the sky, you will gain more contrast, which will add to the depth and texture of your ski photography.
St Christoph Austria 2014 | www.kimrixphotography.co.uk
2. Keep the camera warm.
Snow blizzards and freezing temperatures are excellent conditions for skiing and snowboarding, but they don’t do any favours for technology or camera equipment. Keeping the camera warm will stop the batteries running low quickly, and maintain the quality of the lens. The best place to keep your camera is inside your jacket, close to your body for maximum heat. Never take a camera inside if you are planning on taking it back out again shortly after. Your camera will condense, and will turn to ice. If you have to take it inside, place it in a camera bag or backpack and make sure that it is completely dry before you go back outside.
Ski photography | www.kimrixphotography.co.uk
3. Use your flash.
Using your flash in an extremely bright environment my seem unnatural and the wrong course of action in ski photography, however, it will help light up your focal point – usually a person- in the foreground against a very bright backdrop, forming a focal point in the final portrait.
Winter Austria | www.kimrixphotography.co.uk
4. Use shutter speed.
Ski photography is the absolute opportunity to create stunning action shots of your loved ones whizzing down the slopes and doing tricks. To create these portraits, you have to create a motion blur, which will give the impression that the skier or snowboarder is moving quickly through the snow. You will need two things to achieve this, a steady hand and knowledge of shutter speed. Set the shutter speed extremely low as your subject jets past you, and keep them in the middle of the view finder, as you follow their motion. This will create a stunning action shot that will impress all of your friends back home.
5. Stay safe.
This may be obvious, but it is easy to forget, when you are in the middle of the moment, trying to capture the perfect shot for your ski photography, that you are in the way of people coming rapidly towards you. The last thing you want to have whilst capturing your ski photography is an accident. Don’t stop at the crest of a hill, where anyone coming towards or above you can’t see you. Always give skiers and snowboarders an indication if you have stopped, the best option is by planting your skis or snowboard upright in the snow.
winter ski | www.kimrixphotography.co.uk
Action ski photography will make for great memories, and stunning and creative portraits that you can display in your home. Winter sports provide fabulous opportunities for photography, and these opportunities should definitely be taken advantage of.
For more top tips, or if you would like to enquire about me traveling abroad to capture your professional family or ski photography, please email info@kimrixphotography.co.uk
Kim Rix
Kim Rix Photography
Making Memories Precious