Photographing Autumn foliage in overcast weather

Autumn foliage overcast photography
My mini photo project?

This was somewhat of a fun and challenging photo project that I created for myself. I have always heard that the best time to photograph Autumn foliage is during an overcast day; and rain makes it even better. The weather near me has been very wacky lately and when I learned that there was light rain in the forecast I immediately wanted to put the theory above to test. Of course, it had to revolve around fishing so quite naturally my scene would have to include a body of water.

I didn’t anticipate the weather being so cold but it was freezing! My fingers ,lips, and body shivered. I was well bundled up but I guess my body has been enjoying the nice weather and wasn’t quite ready to accept the coldness of the Autumn season. However, after getting my rod set up and casting out, I was able to view the scene around me while waiting for the fish to bite.

It was very peaceful out at the lake which gave me more space to think of a nice way to capture the foliage. I began to look and think, look around, and some more thinking.  I was starting to wonder what all of the hype was about. I’m sure it’s a personal preference but I am a huge fan of sunshine and bright skies. Maybe that’s why this scene didn’t meet the wow factor that I have heard about. Don’t get me wrong, I love the colors of Autumn in any condition. However, I think I may be more bias toward the sunny Autumn scenery than the overcast scene.


It was low lighting so I decided to adjust the ISO and aperture to make the correct exposure. I wanted my aperture to remain wide so I could have a fast shutter speed. The steam rising off the lake added a spooky element to the scene;  It reminded me of a creepy outdoor scene in a horror movie. I took a few shots at different exposures to see which one would bring out the effects of the steam and not blow out the sky. There was absolutely no element to use in the foreground. Whenever I make a landscape photo, I usually like to add some type of foreground element to make the picture a tad more interesting. The camera used for this project was mirrorless;.with a 50-230mm lens. The lake was rather large and it was best to use a zoom to isolate a part of the scenery. I recently purchased one because I noticed that my mood changes from wanting to carry light to not minding carrying heavy. That day, it was to cold and it was a “carrying light” kind of day

On a final note

I guess there are pro’s to photographing Autumn foliage in overcast weather. I can say the wetness of the leaves creates a deeper color and the contrast between the sky is much greater. In sunny conditions, the sky and the colors of the leaves are in competition with each other; both are beautiful and contribute to the image in their own way. However, the start of the picture would be the colors of Fall when creating a photo in overcast conditions. Now, for the con’s, I don’t have many. It depends on my mood. Lately, I have been wanting to capture the last bits of nice bright weather before the darkness of winter arrives. The sky seems a bit boring to me, however, as I said above it makes the star of the photo stand out more.

I am not disappointed in the outcome of the picture above. I think that the weather in any photographic environment appeals to different tastes because it yields different results. After testing the theory that overcast is better to photograph Autumn foliage, my only other option is to capture a bright and sunny scene showcasing the same Fall colors. I will most likely choose a different location to execute my photography project. My goal is to try to shoot as many overcast/sunny days as I can to see if the results vary. I may discover something new about myself in the process; which is what photography has done to me this far. As always, I will have my fishing rod with me to!

I will be sure to post the results in the next (regular) post!


50-230mm at 71mm 1/500 sec f/5 ISO 500


Spark creativity by capturing the world around you one photo at a time


Another scenic drive The hills in this photo are mesmerizing. In my opinion this picture
When in doubt, just bring it The photo above was taken with a cell phone
Beautiful Evening I am always amazed at how much the sky changes and its beautiful
Photography It's so nice to reminisce about the past. When it was bright and green
Letting Nature take over for a bit Lately, I have been making it a habit

3 Comments Posted

Comments are closed.

Follow Backyard Photographer on

Follow Me on Social Media!

Meet the Author blog author photo

I have a strong passion for creativity, landscape, wildlife and nature photography.

All original content on these pages is fingerprinted and certified by Digiprove
%d bloggers like this: