on landscape The online magazine for landscape photographers

Backyard Snowfall

Alan Ranger

Alan Ranger

I am a full-time photography educator. Running workshops, courses and supporting individuals in their pursuit of their love of photography at all levels.


Good snowfall is hard to come by these days, at least, for those of us who don’t reside in areas of peaks, fells and mountains. So, I was delighted when the forecast for a heavy overnight snowfall materialised in the West Midlands in Dec 2017.

So, when I woke, early, in anticipation that the forecast is right, I was delighted to see a good eight-inch blanket of snow outside my house. I had arranged, the previous night, to meet up with others to share the spectacle together. However, after a 45min failed attempt to move the car 1.5 miles down the road, the idea and meetup were quickly abandoned.

Instead, I ventured out into the woods on foot, Plants Hill Woods, Coventry, that back onto my garden. I walk in these woods most days of the year as part of my daily break away from the computer, phone and being online to run the business. On this day I witnessed and felt something I hadn’t experienced there before.

The transformation in colour, peaceful atmosphere and tranquillity was breath-taking. It was still snowing and in fact was blizzard snow, so I was aware that it could be challenging to make images that required the lens exposed for any length of time without protection.

However, the change in tone, colour and structure from my usual observations along the paths I have walked hundreds of times, was quite inspiring. The normal greens, browns, yellows and abundance of seasonal colour had been completely re-painted into a reduced palette of white and slights hints of colour just revealing itself on a few trunks and branches.

There was a temptation when I initially processed the RAW files, to convert them to mono but somehow those images didn’t convey the same evocative feelings experienced at the moment of being there.
There’s a lot to be said for getting out in your own backyard!

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