Fog is a really good occasion to, I could almost say “easily”, create great pictures during winter.
These soft fuzzy glommy atmospheres will invite you in a sort of mysterious movie or thriller!!
At the first look, the fog softens the contrast of our surroundings.
Isn’t it weird, therefore, that a contrast lover like me loves the fog too?! 😮
Here is why. 😉
The fog doesn’t soften the things that surround you in a boring consistent manner but it has a differentiated effect on the scene.
In fact, it behaves a bit like blur (and I am a blur lover too !! 😆 ).
The greatest the distance between you and something in the fog, the more mist there is between you and the thing, and thus, the more faded the thing is.
That’s why the background of the cityscape or landscape shot in the fog seems to disappear, while the subject, in the foreground (closer than you), is much visible. The subject turns into a sharp silhouette which pop up on a somewhat fuzzy white background.
The resulting effect is unique and is somewhere between backlight and blur.
At last, the fog softens the contrast of the overall picture but, above all, it increases the contrast between the subject and the background!
Isn’t it amazing?! 🙂
That’s it! And that’s all.
It’s up to you, then, to play with this particular contrast and to enjoy the legibility of your pictures!
It’s a good thing to overexpose a bit your foggy pictures, in order to get an almost real white and not a dirty sad grey.
Then, choose to apply the appropriate contrast, depending on the atmosphere you want to get (lisible or mysterious).
A great fog already creates a nice contrast between the subject and the background so you don’t always need to apply a strong edit to your picture. Preserve the softness of the picture to keep the magic misty effect untouched!
And… what if we used blur at the same time as fog, to create some even more mysterious and fuzzy photos?!
NB : I took the picture below with a “toy lens” and shifted the focus on purpose. 🙂
Depending on the thickness and the amount of the fog, the effect will start more or less close to you.
The photo below (like the one with the kids) shows the effect with a lighter fog : only the far background is white and faded while all the other areas of the pictures are sharp and contrasting.
For most of the other pictures, here, the visibility is really low, so I were able to make a close subject stand on the overall image.
A black and white rendering gives almost always an amazing result on foggy photos.
However, keeping the soft subdued pastel color is a great option too. 🙂
I hope that this article will inspire you for your own photoshoots and will push you to go out in the morning, in the freezing winter, to create awesome pictures! 🙂