Sharing videos of a memorable visit to a snowy recreation area is a great use of your camera, but making those videos stand out while keeping your equipment safe and dry takes a bit of planning. Here’s how.
Selecting the Right Camera for Winter
Snow is great stuff, but it creates more hazards than your typical photo shoot. For example:
Remember, snow is simply frozen water that melts, often wreaking havoc on electronics. Gear chosen for winter photography should be waterproof, preferably up to at least 3 feet. Regardless of whether your camera is waterproof or not, don’t try to “warm up” your camera before using it; that will only cause snow to melt faster.
If you’re taking your camera skiing, shockproofing is also important so that a simple fall (either you or the camera) doesn’t smash it to bits. If it can’t survive the blow from a botched 360 on your snowboard, it’s not ready for a winter shoot.
Finally, there’s the cold-weather menace of fog to consider. Make sure your camera has an anti-fog lens built in that automatically disperses that steamy haze, ensuring the lens stays clean and videos and pictures remain crisp and clear.
Shooting in the Snow
The stark whiteness of snow presents some challenges for the videographer. Here are some tips for improving your shots under these conditions.
First, shoot at the highest resolution you can: 1080p. The Samsung W200 Pocket Camcorder supports this resolution along with most HDTVs and monitors.
Because snow is so, well, white, the sensor on your camera will read the scene as if you were shooting into the sun. The camera will then automatically step down the exposure level if you let it, which will make your shots look cloudy and gray. Compensate by increasing the exposure level a notch or two to make snow look bright and natural.
The W200 also features an expanded aperture range compared to other cameras, giving you more freedom to tweak settings and get quality video. No matter what camera you use, try shooting in early morning or late afternoon, when shadows are actually helpful thanks to the contrast they provide.
Explore Your Creative Side
You can get even more creative with your videography by using features like these that you’ll find on the W200:
Smart Filter allows you to apply color filters and lens effects to add more excitement to both still photos and videos.
Vignetting fades the edges of your shots to make it look like it was shot through a frosty window.
The fish-eye effect can distort the photo of a ski stunt to make it look even more extreme than it actually was.
While it won’t necessarily make videos look better, the Record Pause feature makes managing and editing those videos a lot easier. Record Pause simply lets you pause and resume a single video file. When you un-pause the recording, it picks up where you left off, resuming recording to the same file instead of starting a new one. Stop and start all you want. When you’re done, you only have one stitched-together file you have to edit or share, instead of a cumbersome collection of several short clips.
Features vary by product/model see product pages for more information and availability.