Sunday, November 04, 2007

The Rain Of King Louis XIV

Where's The Royal Brolly, Your Majesty?

Photographs copyright: DAVID McMAHON

Quite a few people have asked me about using a camera in the rain and I always say as long as you're confident you can keep the camera itself relatively dry, there is nothing to stop you photographing a scene in driving rain.

Yes, the light is always murky. Yes, you have to think carefully about the scene you want to capture. Yes, you have to juggle a camera and an umbrella if the rain is bucketing down. But hey, who doesn't love a challenge? I reckon my two favourite photographs in heavy rain are these ones, both taken in September 2005.

I was on a photographic assignment for the Canadian Tourism Commission and spent ten days in Quebec City, Montreal and parts of Muskoka. This shot was taken on a very wet afternoon in Quebec City and shows not one but two symbols of the beautiful city. On the right is the famous bust of King Louis XIV of France, with the steeple of Notre Dame on the left. You can actually see little pearls of rain across the statue and on the high-res version, there are droplets across the royal nose as well!

The other photograph (above) was taken about 100 or 150 metres away. I had walked away from the square towards the wharf when I was struck by the scene in front of me. To the right was a tourist vessel. To the left was the huge structure - a gift from France - that the locals refer to as the Rubik's Cube. And while the prevailing colour was grey, I was amazed how the little splashes of vibrant yellow lfited the scene.

So next time you're stuck indoors in the rain, don't despair. Just grab your camera, put a smile on your face - and take up the challenge of finding something beautiful in challenging weather.


david santos said...

David, Please!
Send an email to the Brazil embassj your country and repor the injustice that the brazilian courts are making with this girl

The resignation is to stop the evolution. (David Santos in times without end)

Thank you

~**Dawn**~ said...

Two weeks ago, I tried that very thing: juggling a camera & an umbrella while the rain poured down. And it was at night -- in a crowd at Disney World. Talk about asking for the impossible. =P I'm lucky I got *any* of them to come out.

Sandy Kessler said...

I too think Quebec City is lovely enhanced by the fast speaking French_Canadian children who sometimes sound like they are singing the language. love it

imac said...

Grand photos David.

I had one experiece with water,
It was at Staithes north Yorkshire.
I was photographing the rough sea standing on some rocks, when a great wave came from behind and came right over the rocks completly covering me.
Talk about being drenched, Everything was wringing wet, me,camera,camera bag full of seawater and my clothes, DW couldnt photograph me with laughing to much.Had to go and change clothing.As for the camera and eqiptment, I claimed on the Insurance, and got full value.So it was well worth the wash I had.

Oswegan said...

Thanks for discussing this topic. There is a great article in the November Photolife, about, well, photographing in November.

I think you are right, I have taken my camera to some incredibly wet locations, but nothing a good case, a gore-tex jacket and a plastic bag wouldn't take care of.

Makes me want to go outside . . .


Jeni said...

Everytime I come to your blog, I marvel at the beauty of your photographs and the plethora of topics you find to write about as well. And your little puns that accompany your posts -just icing on the cake. Keep up the great work!

Merisi said...

Great photos! :-)
Rain could never stop me from going out on photo safari, the light has it's very own quality and reflections can be quite interesting.

Ananda Niyogi said...

Yes, taking photos in the rain does pose challenges. I find really difficult in correctly exposing landscapes, especially. But then a cloudy skies sometimes offer interesting backgrounds, especially in the evening.

~Fathairybastard~ said...

That's when I bust out the waterproof dispoable dude from the grocery store. Used them on many a canoe trip.