Pick the best camera settings for a cloudy day
Don’t cancel your photo session just because the sun is hiding. Learn how to adjust your camera settings for a cloudy day.
Everybody loves a bright, sunny day — photographers included. But you can’t control the weather, and sometimes you need to take your photos when it’s overcast. Here are some photography tips and tricks to use when it’s cloudy outside.
Use appropriate camera settings for cloudy days.
Beat the dim lighting with the right camera settings on a cloudy day. Here’s what you should do:
- Sensitivity — Bump your camera’s ISO value up a bit to ensure that its sensor catches enough light. An ISO between 400–800 works great on an overcast day.
- Exposure — Lower your shutter speed to let more light reach the cell, making your photos brighter. A tripod helps you keep your camera from shaking.
- Aperture — Open your aperture up as much as possible to let your camera take in more light — although you’ll sacrifice some depth of field.
Make the clouds work in your favor.
These camera settings let you make the most out of a cloudy day outside. But you can also use the weather to your advantage. For example, if the cloud cover isn’t too thick and dark, it will naturally diffuse and soften the sunlight.
If it has just rained, you can position your subject in front of a puddle or other shiny surface for more light. Or you could just shoot the clouds — an approaching storm front makes for a powerful picture.
Lighten up your pictures with a photo editor.
On top of creative camera settings, you can edit your shots of a cloudy day to make them shine. Adobe Photoshop Lightroom is a great tool for brightening up your photos. Its presets make it easy to adjust the levels, colors, and brightness of your photos in a couple of clicks — and they’re also fully customizable.
Bring out the sun.
Don’t let a cloud hang over your photos. Explore everything you can do with Lightroom to adjust and brighten your pictures. Discover even more photo tips as you begin to experiment with various techniques.