It seems that the weather is always a topic of conversation around here. It’s either too hot, too cold, too dry or too wet. Or it’s forecast to be too hot, too cold, too dry or too wet. Or not.
Accordingly, we do a lot of weather stories and weather-related photos.
Which means we watch closely the weather forecast so we can make photos which reflect the current conditions and what everyone will most likely be talking about at one time or another.
The forecast has been for frigid cold in Yakima and it starting getting cold last night so I knew my day today would start with looking for a cold-weather photo. Also, I knew we would need that photo as soon as possible in the day to update our website and Facebook page at the start of day, a high-traffic time for the website.
My idea was to photograph an elementary school crossing guard. They’re on the job early in the morning when it’s really cold and the light is good. I figured they’ve got to be cold standing on the street corner and hopefully I could capture that sense of cold in a photograph.
It was cold (13 degrees with a breeze) when I began hanging out with Mireya Castillo, a paraeducator at a local elementary school who also pulled the crossing guard duty this morning. She was wearing three layers of clothing under her jacket and, she said, “I’m still cold!”
I shot some wider-angle photos of her standing on the corner with the school in the background to give the photo some context. Problem was, from that angle she just didn’t look that cold.
At the same time I noticed how the early-morning light illuminated her breath. So, I went tight to get the photo I was looking for.
By going with a tight shot the reader can see her breath and know how cold it. Also, the fur-trimmed hood pulled close around her face shows it’s cold. Plus, the tight head shot has a very clean background focusing the reader’s eye on Mireya and her breath. All in all, the tight photo is a more dramatic, storytelling photo than the wide shot. So, that’s what I went with today.
It’s supposed to be cold again for the next several days. Hopefully one cold-weather photo will be enough.