It's getting slowly colder outside and as the temperature drops, we'll start to get ice forming on lakes, puddles, ponds and even on waterfalls when it gets really cold, which gives you the perfect opportunity to have a go at some macro and abstract close-up shots of ice.
Look for interest -
For ice to make an interesting shot, you need to find some that has an unusual texture or appearance that will make your photo stand out. Bubbles trapped in the ice, and swirly patterns are often created. Ice that's starting to melt around the edges can create some interesting textures, too. Look out for icy stalagmites, these make a great photo if there are several in a line.
Look for patterns in the ice that will create a visually interesting photo, and that will lead the viewer's eye through the image. Swirls and bubbles often form some sort of pattern, so experiment with composition until you get something that works. Remember images can always be cropped in post production, too.
Cut out reflections -
Ice can be quite a reflective subject, especially if it's starting to melt, so try not to use the flash. Fit a polarising filter to minimise reflections, and if you're still finding them a problem, try standing in a slightly different position and let your body block some of the light. This might mean you need to adjust your settings to stop the image coming out dark.
Sunlight can be used creatively to create more texture in the image, especially if used as side lighting. Ice can melt quicker if it's in the sun though, so make sure you work fast and keep shooting, as the ice can create different patterns as it disappears.
Think about the background -
The ice should be the main point of your photo, so try to make sure the background is nice and blurred or plain. It might be worth packing a piece of black card or plastic to place behind stalagmites to give them a bit of extra punch.
White balance -
Ice can have a whitish hue and this can throw your camera's white balance and make your images look cooler than they should, resulting in a blueish hue. This can be easily rectified by adjusting the white balance manually to suit.
Do take care when you're out photographing ice, ad the terrain can be slippy underfoot. Make sire you're on a stable surface and to avoid taking a dip in freezing cold water, consider using a zoom lens to bring hard to reach ice to you.