Readers Photo Challenge assignment: Baby, it’s cold outside

Since it’s the middle of winter, the first readers Photo Challenge assignment of 2018 will be appropriate to the season: The subject will be “Cold.”

Recent storms have brought snow to the Sierras which are only a few hours away. Snow-capped mountains and white, Christmasy pine trees are perfect for this challenge. People sledding, skiing or otherwise playing in the snow are also appropriate.

If you’re unable to make up to the mountains you can find images of the cold right here in the Valley. Granted, even at this time of the year, the high temperatures can be in the 50s to 60s, not too conducive for cold weather images, but the lows can drop to around freezing. Look for morning frost locally. It can cover leaves, blades of grass and whatever else is exposed to the elements. Photos of frost tend to be shot best as close-ups. Use of a macro lens can help a lot. You’ll have to work fast. The tiny ice particles will melt quickly soon after the first rays of sunlight hits them.

Also, look for people dealing with the cold. People bundled up while out and about are great subjects. The shooting period for this assignment is extended retroactively to January 1, so if you’ve shot any kind of “polar plunge” photos, they’re also eligible.

If still life images are you’re thing, try setting something up with perhaps a glassful of ice from your freezer. A closeup shot of cold condensation on the outside of a cup will work.

Lastly, there’s a school of thought that says that you can’t get good weather pictures without being in it. Be sure to bundle up while you’re out in the cold. Unless you’re in the subzero temperatures of the arctic/antarctic, most cameras can handle the cold. If you’re out in the cold for an extended period of time then come back into the warmth of your home or other building, moisture can condense on the cold metal and glass of your lenses. I suggest that you try to warm up your equipment gradually to avoid the condensation.

How to enter:
1. Entries can be emailed to coto@recordnet.com. Type in “Cold” in the subject line.
2. Photos have to be shot between January 1 and January 22.
3. The number of photos is limited to no more than 12 per person
4. Include your name (first and last), hometown, and the kind of phone you used and where it was taken (eg.: “John Doe of Stockton. Micke Grove Park, Lodi. iPhone6s”)
5. If there is a recognizable person in the photo, please identify them (name, age, hometown) and what they are doing in the photos (eg.: Jane Doe, 6, plays on the playground equipment at Victory Park in Stockton). 

6. Please feel free to include any interesting anecdotes or stories on how you took the picture.

7. The deadline for submission is Tuesday, January 22. The top examples will be published on Tuesday, December 11 with an online gallery of all the photos on the same day.

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