Home Photo Tips Cloud Photography

Cloud Photography

Photography on a Cloudy Day

A cloudy day can be a great day for taking pictures. As we transition from winter to summer, a partly cloudy springtime day is a wonderful opportunity for cloud photography and creating truly compelling images. You just can’t beat a photo taken in the early evening with a deep blue sky and bright flaming orange clouds. Dramatic cloud formations can be a significant compositional element and will definitely add contrast and vibrancy to your photographs. Everyone loves a beautiful, clear and sunny day. But direct sunlight, and harsh shadows from the bright sun, can sometimes produce unflattering images. Without clouds, some landscape photos can look a little boring and as a result, challenge photographers to rely on other composition elements.

Cloud Photography high clouds

Despite all the planning in the world, there are never any guarantees you’ll get awesome cloud formations and just the right light to create memorable images. Tracking weather forecasts could give you insights into possible cloud formations. Unfortunately, there is no way to accurately predict cloud movement and how light may pass through the clouds. It just takes some planning and a little luck to capture great photos on a cloudy day. But if it doesn’t work out, don’t give up. Be patient and keep trying. Eventually nature will reward you for your efforts and you will end up take some stunning photos. Sadly, not all cloudy days are ideal for photography. Gray overcast days with clouds that lack in features and shape can be pretty boring. However, days like these may cast light optimal for photographing flowers.


Cloud Photography dark cloudsIt all starts with being at the right place at the right time. If you want to capture morning clouds at sunrise, you have to position yourself with your camera at the crack of dawn. Conversely, to shoot a nice sunset, you have to be patient and wait for sundown and usually well beyond. Sometimes the best time to photograph clouds are at sunrise, before, during and after sunset, before a storm, and sometimes just after a storm.


Cloud Photography bright rays

If the sky is full of clouds, point your lens up. Using the Rule of Thirds as your guide, compose your shot so the upper two-thirds of your image includes the sky. Use the clouds as your main subject and ocean, lake, valley floor, hills, or mountain range as your foreground.

High Contrast

Usually the sky is several stops brighter than your foreground. The contrast range between the sky and your foreground can be pretty wide (up to 5 stops). For example, if you expose for the mountains, the sky will be blown out and overexposed. However, exposing for the sky can create a nice silhouette of the mountains. Seasoned photographers use what is known as a Graduated Neutral Density Filter. These filters darken specific areas of an image, such as bright skies, while allowing for normal exposure in the other regions of the image.

Weather 101: A Tutorial on Cloud Types (FREE Video)

So if you’re really motivated to photograph clouds and you want to become a cloud expert, you can learn all about the 10 different cloud types from Weather Forecast Office at the National Weather Service in Albuquerque, NM.

Recommended Video Photography Courses

Udemy Photography Courses

PhotographyCourse.net is a participant in the Udemy Affiliate Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for our site to earn fees by linking to Udemy.com.

Photography Course
Photography Coursehttp://photographycourse.net/
Photography Course offers free courses, tutorials, tips, and tricks for photographers of all skill levels. Browse our collection of courses from photographers all around the world to take your passion to the next level.


Types of Aerial Photography and Its Applications

Aerial photography is a fascinating niche that the pros use for many different purposes, and there are many different types of aerial...

Best Nikon Lenses For Landscape Photography in 2020

Landscape photography is one of the more popular photography genres, but like anything else, getting those beautiful...

Sunset Silhouette Photography – A Complete Guide

You’ve seen those spectacular sunset silhouette photos, the ones with a mysterious silhouetted subject watching the sun dip below the horizon. They’re...

Portrait vs. Landscape — The 11 Biggest Differences

If you’re a photographer, sooner or later you’ll ask yourself if you should set your camera to portrait or landscape orientation. You’re...

How to Photograph Lightning

You’ve seen those spectacular lightning photographs--Mother Nature unleashing her electrical fury in a breathtaking fashion, ripping through the sky and lighting up...

How to Photograph Stars – 13 Settings to Master

Photographing the stars is one of the coolest photography genres out there. Capturing the Milky Way in all its glory or the...


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Cart Item Removed. Undo Have a coupon ?
  • No products in the cart.