Shooting in different weather conditions doesn’t just affect your shots aesthetically (think beautiful, soft winter light and heat waves rippling above pavements), but also your gear. Here’s our guide to keeping your camera and lenses safe, whether you’re shooting in the freezing north or tropical south.
Cold weather tips
Keep your camera in a bag at all times and minimize its exposure to the weather. If you are shooting in extremely cold conditions, consider an additional protective layer of airtight plastic bag.
Bring spare batteries no matter what weather condition you’re shooting in, but especially when you’re shooting in the cold. Lower temperatures cause your battery to discharge faster than in warm weather.
Wear touchscreen-friendly gloves if your camera has a touchscreen feature. This allows you to easily manipulate controls without having to sacrifice your fingers to the cold. Or buy the solution (available online) and coat your existing gloves.
Consider a UV filter, as it not only helps clear up the appearance of “haze” when shooting in cold conditions or at higher altitudes but also doubles as protection for your lens in the event of snow or rain.
When shooting, keep your camera close to your body, ideally under a jacket. Spare batteries should also be kept as warm as possible and kept in your pants or inner jacket pocket.
If you’re doing underwater photography, assemble all your gear in a warm place and remove your camera only when you’re about to get into the water (if possible). Most cameras, when properly protected, operate just fine even at 0 degrees Celsius.
Once you’re back indoors, remove your memory and leave your camera in the airtight plastic bag for about 2 hours or until it comes to room temperature. The plastic acts as a protective layer against condensation, keeping your gear safe and dry.
Warm weather tips
Carbon fiber tripods are your best friends in whatever shooting condition. They are hardy, lightweight and can be compact, making it an ideal tripod if you’re shooting in extreme conditions.
Watch out for overheating, which can happen in extreme heat. Take breaks to allow your camera to cool down (and also hydrate yourself) as the image sensor and batteries can heat up pretty quickly.
Avoid changing lenses in high humidity conditions to prevent moisture from entering your camera.
Do not leave your camera in the car if the temperatures are high. You know how intensely hot the inside of your car can get when parked out in the sun? Imagine that heat surrounding your camera! Store in a shady, well-ventilated area and keep out of direct sunlight.
If you’re using insect repellant, do note that products containing DEET can eat into the plastic of your camera body and lens. Be sure to wipe your hands and camera down with a wipe (followed by tissue to absorb moisture) after every shoot.