Monsoon – the word symbolizes freshness! When the initial drizzles transforms into pouring rain, the land of the mountains – Sahyadris too start their transformation. Rainfall brings life to the dried streams and the wetness causes the rocks to have a lovely green layer of moss. The forest gets life all over again and the region is dominated by just one color, Green and one sound, of running water! Rain is truly the lifeline of the Western Ghats.
If you intend to photograph the true beauty of Western Ghats there is no other time better than the monsoons. It will be at its best during this time and the land transforms into a photographer’s paradise during these days. But it has its own challenges, the unpredictable nature of the rain is the biggest of them.
I have been shooting in Western Ghats during the monsoon since past three years. Over the years I have learnt quite a few things, which have made me improve my shooting experience in the rain better, year after year.
First of all – trust your equipment. Even the entry-level DSLR bodies are tough enough to handle slight drizzles. Being over cautious about the equipment would make you more worried than enjoying the shooting experience.
Anything excessive is bad. It is not a good idea to excessively expose the equipments to the rain. To overcome this one can develop his or her own home-made camera pouch using a water resistant material such as plastic cover or something similar, which can take in the camera and expose only the front of the lens outside. I have made one from a simple transparent plastic cover. I made an opening at the bottom of the cover, which allows my long lens to peep out of the plastic cover and have a small opening for the eyepiece to view through the viewfinder. It is simple and pretty effective. I have been using it for the last two years and found this very useful.
A little modified version of the same can be found here in the below arrangement, which is available as a product in Amazon for quite a cheap price. With some effort the same can be made at home as well.
The camera was not in the active shooting position at this time and hence the front element of the lens is covered, but during shoots the plastic is pulled back to reveal only the front element of the lens. This was the one which is available in Amazon for purchase.
When you are on the wide-angle lens, the simplest idea is to use a shower cap – the cheapest option. It provides a decent protection form the drizzle. However it is not sufficient for a little heavy rain.
Earlier one is the better option for slightly heavy rainy condition. The same can be used for wide-angle lenses also with little bit more folding.
You can use the shower cap in front when you are not shooting. This is required as not all the time you will be shooting in the field. During the monsoon you tend to wait for the cloud to move or to gather etc to get the lighting condition how you want.
There are solutions available on internet where you can buy these/similar items. These pre cautionary measures are important if you really want to enjoy shooting in rain and get some of those amazing images during the rainy season.
Hope you enjoyed the little write up, and as always we would love to hear from you regarding your adventures. So let’s get going and get wet!