With all my Motorsport Photography assignments lately I have found it hard to get up to Richmond Park & Hampton Court with my camera. I love to get out with my cameras & enjoy shooting wildlife photos just for my own pleasure. We don’t get a lot of snow down where I live around Heathrow area. So what better time than in the last few days to create some snowy wildlife photos during The Beast from The East.
Snow drifting across a frozen Pen Ponds in Richmond park
Diana Fountain in Bushy Park
Cold Weather Photography Tips….
Cold weather & electrical equipment don’t get on too well, so here are a few tips I use. Charge your batteries up fully before you set out. Cold weather will pull the current (amps) from batteries much quicker than in normal conditions…. that’s why your iPhone seemed to go down to 20% quicker than normal!! If your camera batteries are getting old they will go flat much quicker too. Always keep your spare batteries & memory cards in an inside jacket pocket so they keep warm from your body heat. Cameras are fiddly things with all the dials & buttons at the best of times. Now add thick gloves… & they’re almost impossible to use. I use weightlifting gloves, padded palms keep my hands warm & for grip & fingerless so you can still work your setting dials.
If it’s still snowing & your worried about your camera body getting wet while it’s hanging from your shoulder. Lay a chamois leather over the top & tuck it in around the strap to keep it in place. Or next time you’re on holiday pinch the Shower Caps out of the hotel bathroom, they make great waterproof camera covers!!
When you get home from your shoot, don’t put your camera away in it’s case for a while. Leave it out in the room with the front lens cap off, to acclimatise to the temperature. Being a plastic or alloy, the lenses & camera body will have got very cold outside. If you put it away in your kit bag as soon as you are home, there’s a high chance of condensation forming on the outside & worse inside your equipment.
Time to throw on some layers… 5 at least I think I had on & out into the bitter cold I went, Nikon in hand…..
I feel very lucky to live close to Richmond Park with it’s landscape & wildlife are constantly changing throughout the seasons. Getting out with my camera for a few hours is a great place to relax & switch off from work. The exceptional cold weather, The Beast from The East as the media were calling it, delivered a few days of snow & ice. It made for some great photos.
A squirrel taking advantage of some kindly left bird seed
Ducks on the ice at Richmond Park
I took a walk into Isabella Plantation while I was there, thought there might be some snow drops maybe. When I spotted a fox walking down a path the other side of some bushes. I managed to fire a few shots off quickly in case this was all I saw of him. Quietly I managed to make my way through the bush & get onto the path behind him. Crouching down, I made that funny kissy noise you make with your lips to a dog. I just hoped he might turn towards the camera just before he bolted away..
A fox in Isabella Plantations at Richmond Park
You can imagine my surprise when rather than run off, he turned & came trotting back up the path towards me!! Brave, Cheeky little thing….I suspect he was hungry & clearly used to people in the park.
Trotting back up the path towards me…
Brave, Cheeky young Fox in Richmond Park
Young Fox sits patiently while I take his portrait at Richmond Park
Richmond Park is home to a large herd of over 600 Fallow & Red Deer, always on my list whenever I go. I wanted to get a few shots of them in the snow but I only managed to see them as it melting on the last day.
A young Stag watches me with the herd in Richmond Park
Deer Crossing the road through Richmond Park
Large Stag in Richmond Park
The snowy weather also made for some really lovely photos of the wild birds in local parks. Here are a couple of Robins, Gulls & a Swan from a walk through Bedfont Lakes & Hampton Court.
Robin perched on a lichen covered twig at Bedfont Lakes
A little Robin is all puffed up to keep warm in the snow
KEEP OFF THE ICE….yes that means you too!!
Frozen Long Water at Hampton Court makes a great Runway for this Swan
I hope you enjoyed a small collection of some of my Wintery images from the local parks. I know it can make life difficult but as a photographer I hope next year we get another visit from the snow fairies!!