First Snow (Montreal)

It is rare when the first snow of winter stays around for a long time. Typically, it melts right away or by the following morning.

But, this year was different. We got 25cm of snow and the temperature quickly dropped below -10C. It looks like the first snow of winter is here to stay.

It was perfect timing for me to test my new travel photography setup. I have a new Fujifilm XT-2, which is weather sealed with a dual memory card slot and a weather-sealed 18-135mm Fujinon lens.

For a long time, I wanted a more robust camera and lens combo for my travels so, I am excited to see if this combination will live up to my expectations.

First Snow (Montreal) 1
Montreal. Canada
Loc: 45.42919, -73.68833


The Fujinon 18-135 mm is not a very wide lens, which makes it challenging to compose wide open landscapes. I find myself shooting a lot of panoramas of four, six or even eight shots and later combining them into a single composition in Lightroom.

But, for this shot, it was not complicated at all and the 18mm was wide enough to include all the elements of the scene into a single capture.

I used exposure compensation to boos the exposure by 1.5 stops to compensate for very bright snow.

Editing & Processing

It was a single RAW processing workflow.

Lightroom (85%)

First, I used the Crop Overlay tool to improve the composition, making it a bit tighter.

Next, I used the Autumn preset from my Winter Colors Collection as the base for Lightroom Rapid Editing. Then I used TOOLKIT to open up the shadows in the foreground and boost the Contrast.

The Lightroom Preset Editing Formula: Crisp Morning (9, 17, 22, 31)

Photoshop (15%)

First, I used the Spot Healing Brush to clean up the graffiti on the asphalt and then I boost the details and reduced noise.

PluginsDeNoise (noise reduction), Topaz Detail (local contrast boost).

Total Time: 12min

Before & After Transformation

Archiving: I save all my photos as JPEG (quality: 100%) at full resolution and with the help of the Lightroom plugin, I synchronized them with my portfolio on SmugMug for safekeeping, sharing, image hosting and online sales.

Do not forget that my FREE Lightroom Preset Collection is always free for all subscribers to my newsletter.

by Viktor Elizarov
I am a travel photographer and educator from Montreal, Canada, and a founder of PhotoTraces. I travel around the world and share my experiences here. Feel free to check my Travel Portfolio and download Free Lightroom Presets.

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