Podcast: Extreme-Weather Photography


This week, we welcome two photographers who know the joys of spending a late afternoon waiting for super cells to form, or that perfect lightning strike to appear, as well as the perils of rising waters, golf-ball-sized hail, and projectile debris in flight. Our topic today is extreme-weather photography, and we welcome photographers from two different continents to tell us about their shooting styles, safety precautions, gear, and their general thoughts on weather, social media, and the photography business.

We are joined first by photographer and filmmaker Jim Reed, who is a represented by National Geographic Image Collection. His work has been published in National Geographic magazine, the New York Times, Scientific American, and The Guardian, and has been featured on the Weather Channel, Discovery Network, and the Oprah show. He is the author of the critically acclaimed 2007 photo book, “Storm Chaser: A Photographer's Journey.” With Reed, we discuss his minimal gear setup, safety precautions, useful apps, and how his client base has shifted during his thirty-year career.

After a short break, we welcome Jordan Cantelo, from the Western Australian town of Jurien Bay. Cantelo is a local wildfire officer who began photographing weather during long stints in the bush. With Cantelo, we speak about the specific weather and storm types in Western Australia, his use of lightning triggers, his preference for medium format cameras, landscape compositions, and how he follows weather systems to get the shots he is after.

For many photographers, being a “storm chaser” seems like a thrilling way to earn a living, so tune in to the B&H Photography Podcast for our conversation with two seasoned weather and landscape photographers to get a better understanding of the dos, the don’ts, and the practical side of extreme-weather photography.

Guests: Jim Reed and Jordan Cantelo

Above photograph © Jim Reed

Professional storm chasers monitor an approaching tornado in western Kansas on May 8, 2008 © Jim Reed
Concurrent Tornadoes at Night, 2012 © Jim Reed
A Bolt from the Gray, 2004 © Jim Reed
A severe thunderstorm brings much needed rain to a drought-stricken farm near Roswell, New Mexico, 2013. © Jim Reed
Cloud-to-ground lightning bolts strike a field in eastern Wyoming, 2011. © Jim Reed
Waves explode over a seawall and into Galveston, Texas as Hurricane Ike approaches, on September 12, 2008. © Jim Reed
Ominous Skies © Jordan Cantelo
Dowerin Evening Lightning © Jordan Cantelo
Microburst- Between Beacon and Wialki © Jordan Cantelo
Electric Skies – Beacon © Jordan Cantelo
Kimberley Wet Season Skies © Jordan Cantelo


Host: Allan Weitz
Senior Creative Producer: John Harris
Senior Producer: Jason Tables
Executive Producer: Lawrence Neves