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Before the first frosts the last few Garden Spiders will be spinning their webs and on a dewy morning these are tempting prospect. Try to catch them just as the first rays of the sun does , you will have a minute of crystal spangling before they dry out so be quick and try to keep the background in shadow to make the webs stand Out. Grey Squirrels will be busy and if they visit your garden try building little ‘sets’ which are more natural looking than your patio , lawn or shed roof . Scavenge a log from the local woods. Push some sprigs of Holly into a pot for a nice background and lure them into position with a few peanuts and wait for the perfect pose.  

It's in short supply now but snow makes a great background for photographs. It simplifies the everything and can make your subjects stand out and look more colourful, so if you are lucky enough to have a little flurry get down the park with the dog before it melts. Use it as a means of isolating your best friend from the environment, cut out the clutter and try to get them with just snow around them. Careful with the exposure tho’ as often the brightness of the snow will lead to your images being darker than normal – something you should be able to correct at the printing stage if you are digital. Second to snow a good hard frost can transform the countryside into a fairytale landscape and all you need is a subject. This is a great opportunity to focus on ‘domestics’, cattle, horses and ponies, sheep etc. Normally turning you lenses onto a muddy field full of Friesians is not a tempting offer but when all is glistening and they are blowing puffs of steam into the freezing morning then there will plenty of photos out there , you just have to find them . If there is a really mean frost the manes and eyelashes of ponies can be crusted in ice and this makes a great photo, although I’m not sure the subjects would agree!

Winter also sees a vast influx of wildfowl to our shores and these make good subjects for the compact camera user when they are Swirling about in huge flocks. Each individual bird may be quite small in your picture but together all the ‘dots’ join up to make an impressive whole. As usual be careful with the background, in this case a landscape, no telegraph poles, chimneys or power stations! Crisp, cold and blue early morning skies look far nicer as do rich sunsets and silhouetted birds.



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