Friday, February 16, 2024

Snowy Shoot At Donner Lake

Yes... I got out yet again on the cross-country skis recently at Donner Lake, here in Truckee, California. I try to get out a few times a week for exercise and to enjoy the Great OutDoors. And of course, I almost always bring the Canon camera with me.

I wasn't really expecting to shoot much. There was some strong winds with the snowstorm the night before, so most of the snow wasn't looking perfect in the trees, the wind tends to knock it off of the pine needles, it falls onto the soft snow on the ground, and it leaves a less than perfect look. However, out at the lake shore, away from the trees, the snow was still looking nice and smooth. The sun was out so we had bright whites, a bit of blue sky, and some dynamic looking clouds. It all motivated me to actually take the camera out of my backpack and get some cool shots!

These below were all shot handheld with the Canon 5DS R and a 24-105mm lens. No lens filters, flash, or tripod were used.



I thought I was done shooting and was on my way back to the cross-country ski trail when I stumbled upon these icicles. They had the perfect background so I got the camera back out, and went back to work. Yes, I said work... These will all be on my website soon, available as large and small fine art prints. I also offer image licensing of my images, high resolution versions can be purchased and downloaded through my website, and used in publications or in a business's printed and online marketing efforts.


Thanks for looking and I hope you all had some great outdoor time today as well!

Scott Thompson
Scott Shots Photography


Icy Abstract Photo. What Do You Think It Looks Like?

I was lucky to get out again recently on the cross-country skis for a little exercise at Donner Lake, here in Truckee, California. While out, I decided to ski over to Coldstream Pond, to see what I could see. There were some interesting cracks in the ice that that had frozen back over. I really liked the look of this scene on the pond. I know what I think it looks like, but what do you think it looks like???


Shot with the Canon 5DS R and a 24-105mm lens. The ISO was 160, the lens aperture was f/18, and it was a fast 1/200 of a second exposure. When I shoot handheld, I like to have a nice fast shutter speed, it helps the image be a lot sharper and look better as a big print.

Here's a look at the whole frozen pond. I'm not sure if the ice was thick enough to walk on, but I certainly wasn't going to find out...

Thanks for looking and I hope you are all having a great day!

Scott Thompson
Scott Shots Photography


A Cool Look To Donner Lake

There was a break in a big snowstorm recently. It had been dumping all day, a decent amount of snow piled up fast. I took the opportunity to make some tea, grab the camera, and walk across the street to Donner Lake in order to enjoy a little outdoor time.

When I got to the lake, I was surprised and pleased to see these cone shaped snow covered rocks! The cone look made them a bit unique compared to most snow covered rocks. Also, the lake was coated with a slushy slurpy layer of snow. The whole scene looked kind of surreal so I fired off many photos and even waited around until sunset, with hopes for a fiery colorful sky.

Sunset did not fire off quite like I had hoped, but there was still a bit of warmth to the clouds. It was beautiful out!


These were all shot with the Canon 5DS R and a 24-105mm lens. All handheld, no tripod or lens filters. The camera settings varied but the shutter was always 1/200 of a second. I like using a fast shutter speed when shooting handheld in order to ensure that the image will be nice and sharp if I print it up big.

The image above was looking to the east, the image below was looking to the west toward Donner Summit.



Okay, this was weird... I found this hole below with a little feather floating in it. I have no idea how it formed, or if the feather had something to do with the snow not sticking there. But it looked very interesting and was very photo worthy.


As you can see above, the snow on the surface of the lake was more of a slushy slurpee and not frozen solid. I tried going out with the camera again this morning for a sunrise shoot, but the slush had melted and the scene was no longer really photo-worthy in my opinion (see the photo below).


It was a fun photoshoot yesterday! I spent a lot of time out there walking up and down the shoreline. I shot many different compositions, but these were my favorites.

Oh! And earlier in the day, while running errands, I saw this Tesla Cybertruck in the wild! I've seen one driving around town before, but this was the first time seeing it in a snowstorm. I've been told Teslas handle the snow fairly well with their all wheel drive. This one had cables on the rear tires, so it was probably driving like a tank, no slipping and sliding.


Thanks for looking and I hope you all had a great weekend too!

Scott Thompson
Scott Shots Photography


Edit: Here's a Youtube Short with the photos.

Tuesday, January 30, 2024

Photography and Ice Fishing Adventure

New YouTube Video! Sunrise over Donner Lake photography, followed by ice fishing up above Truckee, California. 

Here's the photo I got at sunrise:

Thanks for watching. Have a great day!

-Scott Thompson