So this morning I thought I'd take a quick walk to Miidera Temple since it rained overnight and while there was still some cloud cover for diffused light. Of course, by the time I got to the temple the sun and blue sky decided it was time to dash my hopes of a late morning photo session. I decided to wait it out and indulge in a canned chocolate drink to pass the time. Not too long after I noticed that a darker band of clouds were approaching so I quickly made my way back to the scene I wanted to photograph.
The reason I like to shoot temples on cloudy days is because the diffused light reduces contrast. Temples are dark and bright at the same time, and especially so if you visit them during midday (which I almost never do). Since I don't do HDR or use Photoshop (I'm not against using them), getting a good exposure in camera is important for me. Also, you can get more naturally saturated colors when the light is diffused and when everything is wet from rain. A tripod is also super important if your exposure times are long. Luckily Miidera allows the use of tripods, not all temples do.
One thing that challenges me at Miidera are the amount of signs at the temple. The scene above might be the only photo you can take here without a bright gaudy sign. I find that getting an image at any temple in Japan without a sign (or wires) is a challenge. This is a small and personal issue, of course, and one way that I overcome this is by using a telephoto lens to omit any unwanted objects in an image. Since I don't remove anything, with the exception of dust spots on the sensor, from my photos this is important. For me, I want a temple, garden, or castle photo to have little or no indication of the modern age. How about you? What things do you find challenging when you're out taking photos and how do you overcome them?
Thank you for reading!