You Do Not Control The Weather

Gathering images should be top of mind for any writer working under deadline.

Most publications require you to submit your own images. If you can’t produce them yourself, you need to look at stock photography or public domain photos immediately and begin the process of securing permissions while you write your article. Some permissions take months to get, some impossible to get before deadline. The race to collect images begins immediately upon acceptance of an assignment.

It is crippling that most publications will not pay for your own photographs nor will they pay for the tremendous cost of stock photography. You need to understand this before accepting a low paying assignment. If you still want to write that article, realize that it won’t be making money for you and consider the article to be resume building instead. Now, weather.

Even in the middle of summer, conditions may not be right for photography. The San Francisco Bay area is often socked in fog throughout the summer, the best time for clear photography is in the fall. Clouds can happen anytime in any season and they, too, can wreck what you have in mind.

You must think about the weather, especially if you are traveling for an article and cannot return for better conditions. If you get rain, take the best rain shots you can. Take as many photos as you can, maybe some will be picturesque despite conditions. If you return to a site a few weeks later, realize your photos may not match up with each other as the weather may be very different from your last visit.

This video shows me setting up my drone in the dramatic location of the Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area close to Las Vegas. Many beautiful sandstone cliffs in layers of red. The idea here was to photograph dusk in the canyon. A fine idea, everyone loves a good sunset.

Here, though, clouds intruded on this late afternoon, gathering enough that all I had at dusk were grey clouds and dark mountains. Gloom. At the start of summer. Who knew? It was really too bad, as there was no wind at all which would have been perfect for flying. Yet, unusable footage. Another day. Don’t waste your time in post trying to improve really poor photographs. That’s a job for experts, if they can do it all. You probably don’t have those skills as a writer. I sure don’t.

You must think about forecasts and locations and get that all figured out as you work toward deadline. You do not control the weather.

As an experiment for you Word Press geeks, here’s my Instagram video taken at the time of setting up the drone. Portrait mode, of course. This unedited video resides in my media library at this website. The second video is the same but hosted at Vimeo. Can you tell any difference? Which do you prefer? Vimeo allows you to pick a thumbnail frame from your video. That becomes the image a viewer sees when deciding to watch a video. WP doesn’t let you do that.

Getting the Drone Ready at Red Rock from Thomas Farley on Vimeo.


Also, do not leave your soft sided drone case open while at home, lest you face this terrible vision.


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About thomasfarley01

Freelance writer specializing in outdoor subjects, particularly rocks, gems and minerals.
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