Spanish-American Photographer and YouTuber Aows has published this 9.5-minute video that discusses a topic most photographers avoid: taking photos in bad weather conditions. Aows explains how he does it and why he thinks it’s worth it.
Aows says he has experimented with multiple methods for keeping his camera dry when venturing out into bad weather. While he has tried umbrellas and waterproof cases, he has found neither of them to be particularly effective. Umbrellas handle driving wind and rain poorly and waterproof cases restricted his lens choices too much. Instead of these options which might look nicer, Aows said that he thinks using a plastic bag with holes cut into it is probably your best and most reliable option even if it doesn’t look good.
For the rest of your camera gear, most camera bags have a rain cover that Aows recommends you take advantage of.
When you’re out shooting in inclement weather, it’s highly likely that it will either be cold, wet, or a combination of both. Because of this, Aows recommends using a car as a base of operations so that you have a place to go to stay warm or dry off. It also allows you to drive to different spots, get out and shoot for a few minutes, and then return to the relative quiet and safety of the vehicle where you can then change up equipment and plan your next shot.
“For me it’s about finding the right balance between finding the potential for a good image, and the potential for damage,” Aows says. “That’s also one of the main reasons I don’t use expensive gear.”
If his equipment cost several thousands of dollars, he says he would probably think twice about putting it through the rigors of bad weather. But since he only uses gear he knows he can replace, he’s less concerned about it.
“The health of my camera and lenses is not my first priority to when it comes to making images.”
On that note, Aows says it’s a good idea to have a “disposable” camera that functions, but that you are positive you won’t miss if it were to break. For Aows, that is a Sony point and shoot.
But why should you take all these precautions in the first place? What’s the advantage of making an effort to take photos in bad weather? Aows says that winter landscapes, rain, and mist are extremely beautiful and worth shooting.
“There are always images to be made out there,” he says. “Your camera gear is there to create images not to stay at home. Don’t limit yourself to sunny, clear, and warm days. There are very unique opportunities out there.”
To emphasize his point, Aows points out that he was the only person who was out the day he chose to shoot, meaning no one else was able to see or appreciate the scene except him and those who eventually see his photos.