An experiment: Shooting into the mist

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Although it may not be immediately apparent, this photograph is possibly one of the most experimental I have ever taken. As is often the case with such images, I had something entirely different in mind when I set out with my camera equipment in my bag.

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This photograph was one big experiment. Taken in misty conditions, I hope you will agree it is atmospheric.

Having had a ridiculously busy week (you can read why here), my camera had been left, largely unloved. I therefore decided I would get up extra early at the weekend and take some photographs in the wonderful lighting conditions that usually occour as the sun rises.

I woke up early as planned and looked out of the window to discover there was some mist. I thought this would either clear, or it would add some atmosphere to the photographs I was planning to take.

I jumped into the car and headed off to a photogenic location in some nearby woodland in Surrey. As I tackled various back roads, it became more and more apparent that the mist was, in fact, a very thick fog and there was absolutely no way the sun was going to break through.

I parked the car and gave this some thought. I was about to give up but my eye kept being drawn to this footpath. I felt it looked very atmospheric and oddly welcoming.

I knew the camera would struggle to focus in these conditions but but I gave it a go anyway. Knowing the camera would struggle to focus, I put into manual mode, something I don’t do often enough. It took a few attempts to get the shutter speed, aperture and ISO settings right but I got there eventually. I was concerned the slow shutter speed might result in camera shake so I balanced the camera on a gate and used the timer to release the shutter. When editing, I reduced the saturation ever so slightly, but that was the only change I made.

As you can tell, there was a bit more to this photograph than simply pointing the camera into some mist! I also hope you’ll agree it looks atmospheric.

Out of interest, what is the most experimental photograph you have ever taken? I’m looking for ideas so do please leave a comment below as your experiences will no doubt inspire me.

I will be adding this blog post to the weekly #MySundayPhoto linky hosted by the amazing Photalife blog. It’s weel worth taking a look if you enjoy photography. Simply click on the badge below to visit the linky.




38 thoughts on “An experiment: Shooting into the mist”

  1. Wow this is shot so well and you’ve managed to capture such a spookiness. Have you ever seen the movie The Fog? This reminds me of that!

  2. I always think mist/fog looks so atmospheric but I find it really hard to get a good shot. You’ve done a fab job, looks very spooky. Glad you still managed to have fun, even without the sun. #MySundayPhoto

  3. I think you have done very well. The conditions sound challenging, but you managed to make the most of them. There is loads of atmosphere in that shot and it really draws me in. #MySundayPhoto

  4. Paul @ Topsy Turvy Tribe

    Mist and fog is certainly very atmospheric but totally agree it’s so hard to capture. Great composition.

  5. Looks like someone is about to murdered. I’d take this and run!

    Not tried anything experimental yet, I want to try and get Isabelle crawling with a slow shutter speed so she blurs along but everything else is clear. We’ll see. #MySundayPhoto

    1. Oh wow, good luck getting a blurry pic of a crawling child. I want to see the results of that because that is definitely a photographic challenge!

    1. Hurrah! You’re the first person to call this image lovely! I personally didn’t find it all that scary but everyone else seems to have done.

  6. I have just driven back through a sea mist this evening and wished there was somewhere I could stop to take some pictures, but the road was too busy. This is lovely and atmospheric! 🙂 #sundayphoto

    1. Mist can be a bit eerie. That wasn’t really the look I was going for with this image but I appreciate why everyone is saying that.

  7. Not just atmospheric but I think there’s a werewolf creeping around the corner. You know it seems as if every photo I take is an experiment no matter what camera I use. I try to use manual as often as possible and sometimes it pays off. I will say that if I don’t go to the kind of trouble you did for this photo it’s probably not going to turn out. That being said, I find snow and sunny days problematic since you can’t move the sun or the landscape around.
    Fantastic shot and very well worth it.

    1. Oddly, I was taking pictures in the sunshine yesterday. It was a complete nightmare because of the shadows and brightness of the sun!

  8. I love shooting in the fog and mist. It gives images such a spooky quality.

    The most experimental? I have tried a lot of things… one thing that I have still not been about to nail is light trails. I have got some great images with playing with taking images from different perspectives, so getting down on the ground and shooting up or getting up high and shooting down. It is definitely something I would recommend playing around with


    1. A lot of people are saying the picture looks spooky but that wasn’t my intention at all! I do understand why people think that way though. And yes, shooting from different perspectives is always a good idea.

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