Weather Gamblers Anonymous
“Hi, my name is Jeff, and I’m addicted to gambling.”
I gamble on the weather.
When it comes to landscape photography, the more dramatic the weather the better. And my “habit” is to gamble that I’ll get the shot I want before the weather closes in. To me there is nothing more boring than a crystal clear, cloudless blue sky when it comes to my landscape photographs.
No clouds = no drama.
No drama = boring photograph.
And that’s how my habit keeps me going back over and over until I get the photograph I want.
Sometimes, in some of the worst weather I’ve ever encountered.
My gambling habit requires me to pay close attention to the weather when planning a photo outing. Both for safety reasons, (notice the near white-out conditions and avalanche debris field in the above photo of Tuckerman Ravine), and to help increase the odds I’ll get the dramatic light and cloud filled sky I’m after.
If there is a weather system moving through, and there is even a chance that the sun will find a break in the clouds near the horizon at or near sunrise or sunset, I want to be there to capture it.
To gamble and lose.
Imagine this next photo with no clouds in the sky.
Even with the clouds, this was a gamble I feel I lost. The weather to the west slammed the door on the sun well before sunset, thus leaving me with an image I’m not entirely happy with. More than a few people have told me they really like this photo. When I look at this, and other “weather gambles” that didn’t fully pay off, quite often all I see are the photos I didn’t get.
Yet another push deeper into my habit.
Here are a few more examples, most are images you may have seen in earlier posts, where my habit of gambling on the weather didn’t pay off entirely the way I’d hoped.