We carve it, shave it, skate on it, and drop it in our tea. It's ice. And while winter can grate on you by January, this week's Shooting Challenge offers us 124 reminders of the beauty of cold.

Lead Shot - Technicolor

The ice and snow in Brussels had already disappeared two weeks ago, so I had to do it with the ice available in my fridge. Unfortunately, this didn't really show nice patterns and my zoom was not good enough to focus on a small part of it. I decided to try the tricks from smoke photography. I inverted the image and played around with different colours. This is the result! Canon 450D with Sigma 17-70, ISO 200, f/7.1, 1/125s
-Jan De Decker

Frozen Satchel

My neighbors must think I'm losing it, laying in the grass taking pictures of frost. Canon 50D with Canon 100mm Macro lens, full set of Kenko pro tubes and sigma macro ring flash. 1/60 sec, f/16.
- Chris Andrews


Hey there! I'm Daniel, I'm from Germany and I'm 19 years old. I got my Canon 550D (respectively Canon Digital Rebel T2i) for Christmas and I was eagerly awaiting the first shooting challenge on Gizmodo. So when I read 'Ice' I was pretty excited since it used to be really cold outside. But when I had finally time to shoot the temperatures rose from -12° C (10.4° F) to 7° C (44.6° F) and all the ice was melting :/ But since the shooting challenge said artificial ice was allowed I had an idea. I didn't want the picture to be just plain black and white, I wanted it to have some interesting colors in it. So I decided to take an orchid, put it into water and freeze the whole thing. It turned out to be a brilliant idea. I really like the shots I got especially because I bought myself this retro ring so I can mount the lens the otherway round to the body in order to make brilliant macro-shots. It was rather difficult to focus because I don't have a tripod yet and the depth of field in retro position is awful. The picture provided is one of the best I got where the ice really looks like ice. Equipment used: Canon 550D, EF-S 18-55mm in retro position; ISO 100, F11, 1/125s, internal flash and RAW. RAW processing done in Photoshop.
-Daniel Lechner


Went out with some friends to the local waterfalls, and while I got a few shots in, I was kicking myself for leaving the house without my tripod, but oh well. After some more hiking, stumbled across a massive rock formation where I saw a whole collection of huge icicles formed,. I knew I wanted to get down there, but being about forty feet down and no rope/rock climbing gear, I was a bit stuck, but I spied a cave and tracked where the other end let out, tested out the ice (since the whole rock formation ending up having its own body of water, and went on through the cave (much to my friends figuring I was going to fall through some ice. instead, got the spot I wanted, and everyone was pumped to get some cool photos. Pays to be fearless with a camera in hand. Also, it pays to wear two pairs of gloves when dealing with subjects like this. Nikon D7000, 35mm f1.8 DX, ISO 250, f/2.0.
- Marc Wrzesinski

Paper Plate

I took a paper plate and put some water in it, and then let it freeze outside overnight. It didn't fully freeze, and the part of the back fell away leaving an interesting design. I then held that up in front of the lights on my christmas tree, essentially using the ice as a filter over the lens, and this is the result. Canon T2i, 30mm, f4.5, ISO 1600, 1/40 sec.
-Donovan Myers

Fire and Ice

Here in Denmark we are having a really cold winter and the fjord which i live close to have been frozen, but warmer weather and alot of wind created these 2-3m high ice structures. I think the sun got some nice contrasts in the scene. Shot with an Olympus E-620 standard kit-lens 14-42mm , did a bit of contrast enhancement in photoshop. Iso 100, F3.5, 1/800.
-Nichi Tonsberg


I froze a Hotwheels car in a chunk of ice, put the big ice chunk on my glass top table (carefully) and this is what came out. Shot on T2i 18-55mm f/22 ISO-1600.
-Dustin Gillis


I just bought myself the biggest Nikon flash (Sb900) and now i have to test it ! The ideer was to make a picture for my brother, for Christmas. Fortunately, I went outside to my balcony and i found what you see! It's hanging from my gutter and it's a bit sunny outside, so the ice is melting a bit (reason for the drop). I used a Nikon D3000 with a Tamron 70-300 F/4-5.6 AF Di LD. and my Sb900 flash. The settings were 1/200, F/36, and the flash were on full power, and pointed directly at the ice.
-Chris Rosenkjær

Fields of Ice

I had not planned to enter the photo competion this week as I did not have a macro lens and we had many mild mornings. However on Sunday I was out with a very crisp morning and shot this with HTC Desire phone. The HTC camera does not have a great amount of control however holding at the right distance away from this old trailer tyre in the corner of a farmers field as the sun came up gave this dawn shot.
- John Kilmister

This Is Ice??

Point and shoot on macro-zoom pressed up against a lupe magnifying glass with a piece of ice off a small puddle in the driveway. Side-lit with an LED flashlight and all placed on a piece of colored cardboard. A little level and saturation adjustments in PS. Strangely enough, out of the 30 or so that I took, none came out a clear as this one with most being too blury or fuzzy - somehow this one managed to focus just right as I was about to give up and try another camera or technique. - Mü

Ice for Sale

So, I spent three hours lying on the ground in the middle on the night shooting a crazy HDR, focus stacked photo of some ice crystals. That's 198 individual photos, if you're interested. It may be a bit of overkill, but I never tried focus stacking before, and the scene had some insane dynamic range. Anyway, then I spotted this as I stopped at a gas station, and it was just too perfect. The only thing that could have made it better would be if the ice man was actually there refilling the ice box. I'll let you know how the other one comes out whenever Photoshop finishes processing… Nikon D300, Nikon 18-200 mm lens, 1/125 s, f/10, ISO 200
-Alfred Barnat

Ice Filter

Well, this photo is less "of" ice and more "through" ice. I figured there'd be a bevy of incredible macro shots, and since I can't compete in that arena I decided to try something different - I made a lens filter out of ice. I knew if I just dumped some tap water into the filter that the resulting ice would be milky and opaque, so I did some Internetting and discovered that the best way to get crystal clear ice is to distill and boil the water before freezing (bartenders take note). Once I had the purified water, I dropped just enough into a generic UV filter to cover the glass and placed it in the freezer. When the water was frozen I just screwed the filter onto the lens as usual and started shooting. The resulting lens-flare-filled photo is of the sun rising outside my front door. And I've also attached a pic of the icy filter itself. Canon 50D & Canon 2.8L 16-35mm w/ IceFilter™ ISO-200 f/8 1/1250.
- Adam Bailey

A Water Balloon In Winter

The thought of shooting ice seemed a bit uninteresting at first since ice photographs tend to be mostly monochromatic. With this in mind, my main goal became about finding a way to incorporate color with ice. As luck would have it I was able to find a water balloon container with some frozen condensation in it, adding the explosion of color I was looking for! Nikon D70s, Tamron 28.0-75.0 mm, ISO 200, f/2.8.
-Gabielle Bakanec

Winner - Ice Planet

Photo of a ice block, lit by single led torch. Nikon D7000 with Tokina AT-X M100 PRO D, 4s, f22, ISO 100, 100mm.
-Petri Damstén

Incredible entries this week—a big thanks to all our participants! As always, the full-size images are available on flickr http://www.flickr.com/photos/gizmodo/sets/72157625801756228/ . We've also posted the two galleries below.

Gallery One (one-page view)

Gallery Two (one-page view)

If you haven't seen it, my site Life, Panoramic has posted its Best Photos of 2010. It's a pretty fantastic collection that's definitely worth a peek.

Click to view