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Masters of Photography

Lesson 23 of 25

Shoot In All Weather

Steve McCurry

Masters of Photography

Steve McCurry

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Lesson Info

23. Shoot In All Weather

Lesson Info

Shoot In All Weather

(sad orchestra music) I think some of the best pictures can be made in rain or wind or wind or snow. I think that the more severe the weather, the more difficult the weather, sometimes the reward is great. I spent months working in the rain in south Asia, and, I think, some of my best pictures came out of that heavy, torrential monsoon downpours. So, when it's snowing or when it's raining or when there's, like, really severe wind, it can be a great opportunity to make some good pictures. So, don't be afraid to work in this sort of severe weather. I think the reward far outweighs the risk. I don't think a little bit of rain or snow or wind or dust will damage your camera. Of course, when it's raining really hard, you wanna protect your camera with a umbrella or some plastic bag or something. I don't think there's a limit to how much water can get into your camera, so, you have to be careful, but otherwise, I think it's a great time to be out working, and the reward far outweighs the r...

isk. reward far outweighs the risk. Some of the best times to photograph is when the light is different, unexpected, something dramatic, not necessarily blue skies or a sunny day, but something which is, maybe, more traumatic and something unexpected, something which is off-center. I think the surprise and the serendipity situations are sometimes the best, so, low light, no light low light, no light is sometimes a really traumatic time to photograph. I think it's always important to keep shooting regardless of the adversity, the weather conditions, or how difficult the situation may be. I keep photographing whether it's raining or it's strong wind or maybe there's heavy snow. I mean, this is the time when you should be working and not putting the camera away because you're worried it might get wet or damaged or something. (dramatic tech music) I think a good example of shooting in severe weather is this picture of three men running on a causeway in Mumbai, India. I saw this cloud bank coming in, and I knew that the rain was gonna hit us any second. I didn't have an umbrella, but as the rain started coming down really strong, and the wind was blowing these waves over the causeway, I just started photographing, and I think it was a really dramatic picture, because the waves were lapping over the walkway, and I caught these three men, literally, trying to flee for their lives before the rain kind of engulfed this causeway. (sad violin music) I was in a TIA state, in northern Bangladesh, near a town near a town named Sylhet. named Sylhet. I was out there photographing tea-pickers, and, then, suddenly, this was in the heighth of the monsoon, we had this torrential downpour, and we were all stuck out there in this field. I had my small umbrella, I had my small umbrella, and I was crouched down. This woman, which was right in front of me, one of the tea-pickers, was just, got real soaking wet, right to the bone. She had this really, I don't know, almost pretty dramatic expression. She's completely soaked. But, I think, and I thought it was a really dramatic moment. I thought she had a incredible expression. I thought she had a incredible expression. It was, of, she's out in the elements, she's getting wet. It's getting... And... Yeah, I think this is a traumatic time to work if you're in the rain or the snow, you just have to find a way to power through it and make something really special. (dramatic string music) I was ridin' down the road in Sri Lank one morning. It was raining fairly hard, and as we passed, there was a man and as we passed, there was a man walking down the road with his elephant. And one of the men walking beside the elephant, in order to stay dry, had, sorta, made this umbrella, had, sorta, made this umbrella, sorta, improvised umbrella out of a big banana leaf. out of a big banana leaf. And, I thought it was so... Again, this is kind of a weather picture of somebody trying to protect themselves from the rain. And I immediately jumped out of the car and walked and photographed this man with his giant leaf, which he was using as an umbrella. I thought it was a very ingenious way to stay dry, and I thought it made a wonderful picture of this man with his elephant. So, don't put the camera down when the weather gets bad. Keep looking, keep shooting, and I think you'll be surprised at the results sometimes when there's really dim light, when it's unexpected, when it's, sometimes, a mysterious situation could turn out to be, really, a wonderful photograph. (dramatic orchestra music)

Class Description

Steve McCurry has been one of the most important voices in contemporary photography for more than thirty years. Masters of Photography is bringing Steve’s class to CreativeLive to share the learnings from his iconic career. Steve will teach how to:

  • Find a subject to photograph
  • How to shoot in all types of weather condition
  • Understand the light at different times of day
  • Improve your compositional skills
  • Blend into the environment so that you can capture impactful street images
  • Use his 8 key tips in order to capture the best portraits

Watch and learn with Steve as you accompany him through the fishing villages of Portugal and in the vibrant streets of Havana. See for yourself how he creates images, as he shares ideas and experiences, and explains how to make great photographs. Steve will also suggest some projects for you to try for yourself.

You can use any device from camera phone to’s all about the image and storytelling.

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Adriana L-G

For me this is not a class, is more the photographer talking about his photos and his experience. It is a little repetitive but I enjoyed. From Masters of Photography I loved Joel Meyerowitz's class and I recommend it strongly. In case you need to choose.