Amazing extreme weather photos

Extreme weather may be stunningly beautiful as well as harmful. This terrifying beauty has the ability to entice people—particularly photographers—out of their houses and into the storm. Instead of staying warm inside, they brave perilous weather, blustery gusts, and downpours to acquire the perfect photo.

Extreme weather, including major storms, may provide both a memorable opportunity and experience. You may capture breathtaking images of massive thunderclouds, powerful ocean waves, and lightning strikes. You can’t wait till tomorrow to get this experience either since the storm will have passed by then.

Photographs by Ben Roffelsen, “A Sound of Thunder”
Storm photography may be exciting, but it can also be risky. It ranks right up there with taking pictures of lions and other swift predators in terms of hazard. You must first appreciate a storm’s deadly might and get yourself ready in order to take beautiful pictures of it. Here are some safety measures you may use while filming a storm.

If you’re weary, stay in.
You need a lot of energy to safely confront a storm. In other words, you need to probably remain at home if you had a horrible night of sleep or don’t feel well. Fatigue lowers the quality of your photographs and puts you at danger.

Similar to this, return home if you grow fatigued while you’re out. Even when you’re feeling energized, a storm may be taxing. You could leave the house full of energy and adrenaline just to return home and pass asleep in bed for a few hours. Strong winds, continual focus, and heavy rain or hail may all drain your vitality quickly. Make cautious not to exert yourself beyond your limits.

Give yourself a time restriction if you struggle to know when to quit. Depending on the circumstances, 1 hour may already be plenty.

Dress appropriately for the weather.
Even though this one ought to be obvious, it’s simple to forget. You reason, “Oh, these common shoes ought to be fine.” Later, when your feet are soaked and you’re outside in the pouring rain (or snow), you start to feel uncomfortable.

This pain may be harmful in addition to being uncomfortable. Being chilly and damp might make you think less clearly and cause you to respond slowly. It can, at the very least, keep you from paying full attention to the storm.

When filming a storm, you really must wear waterproof clothing and footwear. You may also want to carry a helmet to protect your head from flying debris like hail or pebbles, depending on the scenario.

You’ll also need protection for your camera. It is essential to have a rain cover, such as this one from Altura Photo. As an alternative, if you’re strapped for funds, you may construct your own rain cover out of a plastic bag and a rubber band.

Make an escape strategy.
Storms may come out of nowhere. They might attack abruptly in locations that were peaceful and move quicker than you anticipate. This makes it essential to always have a backup plan in place whenever you pause for pictures. As long as the route is not congested with other vehicles and storm chasers, this escape may be as easy as keeping your automobile close by. Ideal is an empty four-way intersection.

If you don’t have a vehicle, be sure to always be near a shelter. Trees aren’t included. You would be in jeopardy if the hail was large enough or if lightning struck the tree. A structure of some type, particularly a tornado storm cellar, is a superior option.

From a distance, fire.
It is wise to shoot from a distance for both safety and photographic reasons. Along with escaping the worst of the wind, hail, etc., you’ll have a better chance of capturing the storm’s epic dimensions. You may see its enormous magnitude and how it traverses the terrain.

Additionally, being far away will lessen your likelihood of being struck by lightning. If you’re shooting on a hill or in an area with plenty of open space, like a field, this is very crucial. Although these spots normally provide the finest observation points, it would be foolish or unsafe to utilize them as shooting locations as the storm approaches.

Simply wait till the storm has gone if you locate a great view point that is too near to the storm. An enormous storm might appear both from the front and the back.

Pick a skilled meteorologist or experienced storm chaser.
The best approach to keep safe is to join an experienced professional on a storm photography trip, which is the next best thing to staying at home. You won’t end yourself in the wrong location at the wrong time with a skilled guide. capturing a tour will also let your guide concentrate on keeping you safe while you concentrate on capturing images.

In any case, go out with a companion. Never go out by yourself. Simply said, storms are too strong for one person to manage. They may quickly become nasty, even if they first seem to be innocuous.

More safety advice may be found in Charles A. Doswell’s excellent essay, “Storm Chasing with Safety, Courtesy, and Responsibility.”

Twisted by Howard Ferrier
Every storm is unique. Nevertheless, you may make plans and be ready for certain circumstances and topics based on the weather. You could come across the following topics in severe weather:

Stormy skies, tornadoes, lightning, blizzards, and ice, as well as sea storms and rainbows
The most apparent topic for storms to address is clouds. They are beautiful subjects for photographs and are simple to capture from a distance.

A wide-angle lens will provide the best results while photographing clouds. Although using a wide-angle lens will enable you to catch the storm’s full majesty, zooming closer may still provide intriguing images.

Try to include something in the forefront when you frame your photo to give your viewers a feeling of size. It might be a home, a flowerbed, or a row of trees. Your image can seem flat and out of proportion without these extra components.

Tornadoes from Apocalypse Now by Andy PARANT
It’s not a task to be taken lightly: shooting a tornado. Think about the photographer trying to get images of grizzlies, as storm photographer Roger Hill famously advised National Geographic. You are welcome to approach and take photos. However, you run the risk of dying if you maneuver incorrectly.

A supercell, a rare and hazardous form of storm, produces tornadoes. Instead of dispersing into multiple thunderstorms, a supercell condenses the storm into a single, vertical updraft. A tornado is produced by this vertical updraft in 1% to 2% of supercell storms.

Supercells undoubtedly call for professional assistance. You are in the middle of an erratic storm that may suddenly develop into a tornado. The danger is still significant enough to use considerable care even though it is quite uncommon.

Katie and Dick McGowan of Wynnewood fine, tornado
Lightning Lightning is a fascinating but hazardous topic. It’s just one of the many good reasons to keep your distance while photographing a storm. You may be killed or seriously injured with only one blow. Fortunately, by following a few simple steps, you may lower your risk.

First, use a solid carbon fiber tripod rather than one made of metal or aluminum, which attracts lightning. Since it’s very hard to capture a nice photo of lightning without one, you should use a tripod in any case.

Second, avoid places where lightning is likely to strike, such as tall trees and other buildings. If you’re too near, the lightning may strike you and then ricochet off of you.

Finally, sit in your automobile and fire the shot using a cable release. If lightning does hit, you will be protected by the car’s structure. If you are concerned that the tripod may topple over in the wind, consider stabilizing it by suspending a large bag from the tripod’s base.

If it doesn’t work, you’ll need to go farther (as much as feasible) in order to properly use the tripod while holding a hand. You should depart if the lightning is 4 miles or less from you. By then, hopefully you’ll have already captured an incredible lightning shot.

Blizzards and ice: Two for the Price of One by Benjamin Chase
Blizzards may appear less dangerous than tornadoes and lightning. They are simpler to flee from and more predictable. You may shoot a snowstorm without worrying about your safety as long as you are prepared with appropriate clothing and remain near to a strong, heated structure like your house. Visit our page on cold weather clothing for advice on what to bring and wear.

The real difficulty is with the photographs, not with remaining alive. It may be quite challenging to photograph snow in dim lighting, particularly when the snow is falling quickly. Even if you have a great concept in your brain, it may be difficult to put it into practice. Read these useful shooting in the snow guidelines to increase your chances of capturing a beautiful photo.

Try waiting till the snow has settled if you’re feeling impatient with it. After a snowstorm, if you’re among the first people outside, you may get stunning images of the perfect, pure snow covering everything.

With ice storms, this approach is equally successful. You’d be better off waiting till the storm is done since ice storms are similar to rainstorms but colder. The earth has since been completely altered by ice.

Sea Storms, an untitled Corrie White work
The best place to take safe pictures of a sea storm is from the shore, unless you’re aboard a big sea vessel like a cargo ship. You may photograph the amazing waves from this vantage point without becoming seasick or in danger of drowning.

If you’re far enough away, that is. Wearing a life vest is very necessary if you are near the water. You can be knocked down by a huge wave or wind blow and end yourself in the water. When you investigate a place, keep this threat in mind.

Understanding the tide tables, wind direction and speed, and wave behavior can help you defend yourself in addition to keeping your distance. This knowledge will assist you in selecting a secure place, particularly if you spend some time exploring the area before setting up.

Try to fire with the wind at your side or back rather than your face, taking safety precautions into account. If not, the wind can splash seawater on your lens. Then, rather than shooting shots, you’d be busy cleaning your lens.

David’s “Flixelpix” video, “Sea Storm Rainbows,”
Rainbows are a nice thing to look for if you want to experience the storm without the risk. They often show just as the storm approaches, allowing you to take a photo and then escape before it arrives.

Additionally, they make wonderful subjects that are rather simple to capture on camera. All you need is a composition that highlights the splendor of the rainbow and a polarizing filter. Pay attention to the backdrop and the ends of the rainbow in particular. These two compositional elements are essential.

You want a backdrop that highlights the colors of the rainbow. Depending on the backdrop, a rainbow may seem faded or vivid. Backgrounds that are dark and void of form, like storm clouds, are great.

Position yourself so that the rainbow strikes the ground or horizon in an eye-catching location for the ends. For instance, the rainbow may disappear above a city or at the storm’s deadliest hour. This will prevent your visitors from being let down when they follow the rainbow to its conclusion.

Rainbow Over Lake Huron by Sherri Yezbick-Taylor