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Overcast Photography

Nature’s great white umbrella – also known as an overcast sky – produces beautifully soft and even light. It�s just the thing for making colors and details come alive. Despite the benefits, though, there also can be drawbacks. Here’s more:

The Problem
Dark storm clouds can create dramatic landscape or cityscape images. But a featureless white sky often poses a compositional challenge: Quite simply, the glaring brightness can overwhelm all the other elements in a scene.

The Solutions
If possible, find a subject that could be enhanced by an empty white canopy – admittedly not an easy task. Otherwise, your best bet is to try the following approach:

Avoid grand landscapes and, instead, narrow your focus to smaller scenes and detail shots that aren’t dependent on a strong sky. Then try one of the following options:

– Minimize the amount of the blank sky – say, by obscuring much of it with trees.

– Leave that sky out of the frame entirely.

Lastly …
Although the light of heavy overcast can enhance colorful flowers, people portraits, and other subjects, it really pays to pay attention to the sky!


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