Slow Down Your Shutter Speed for Fun Snowy Photos


Now that winter is here, you’ll find yourself outside with the kids on the next snowy day. A good time to practice slowing down your shutter speed to create fun effects! By putting your camera on aperture priority mode (A on the mode dial)and moving your aperture (or f-stop) to a larger number like F/8, you will get a slower shutter speed. Since it is usually overcast when it is snowing, this aperture setting should be about right, but feel free to make the aperture even larger, or open up a little bit (move to a smaller number like F/6.3 or F/5.6). In this photo, the exposure was 1/40th sec. at F/6.3— just enough to make the very light snow turn into short streaks, but still fast enough to keep my subject in focus if she moved slightly. I used the stabilization feature on my lens, so camera shake was not a worry, but you will want to be sure that the shutter speed does not drop to slower than 1/30th sec. or else you do risk camera shake without a stabilization feature. If your subjects are jumping around considerably, this technique may not work. I asked my subject to catch snowflakes with her tongue, which made her stand still and concentrate on the activity. Slower shutter speeds (typically those under 1/125th sec.) can help convey motion, and this same technique should be used to make water streaks under a sprinkler or from a hose or for waterfalls. Read more about freezing and blurring motion here and here.

3 thoughts on “Slow Down Your Shutter Speed for Fun Snowy Photos

  1. That is a good shot with the snow just falling right. I never thought of playing around with my shutter speed to capture some interesting effects.

  2. I agree. Taking such kind of image using a slower shutter speed is a very fun way to give a special effect on it without using photoshops and other photo applications. Shutter speed can really give a special and natural effects to your photos.

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  3. I just bought a new DSLR camera at the camera house in Australia last month, and I am still in the process of exploring its features. I think I should try doing this as well. I wonder if it could catch falling rain just like this one.

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