Night Photography

What You Need to Know About Night Photography

You can use standard film cameras or digital cameras when taking night photos. However, most photographers now use digital cameras because it’s more convenient and economical – you can take a lot of photographs without worrying about film wastage. If you want to try night photography, remember that you don’t need to have a lot of special technical knowledge. Follow these simple tips and you will get amazing photographs even in low light conditions:

night photoMany amateur photographers and seasoned professional photographers alike find night photography quite a challenge.  Of course, when shooting night photography, a photographer must be prepared for low light conditions.  Light (as we know) is an important element in photography and taking photos with less than adequate light conditions pose a challenge even to experienced photographers.  However, if done correctly, we can be rewarded time and time again.

You can use standard film cameras or digital cameras when taking night photos.  However, most photographers now use digital cameras because it’s more convenient and economical – you can take a lot of photographs without worrying about film wastage.  If you want to try night photography, remember that you don’t need to have a lot of special technical knowledge.  Follow these simple tips and you will get amazing photographs even in low light conditions:

Equipment

When doing night photography, you will be shooting in low light conditions (duh) and bringing along a tripod is a good piece of photography equipment to start with.  Since you will be frequently adjusting the settings of your camera to take advantage of the available light, your camera can shake while doing so and this can result in a blurred image.  This is where the importance of a tripod comes in.  Your tripod will give your camera the steadiness that it needs.  Make sure you have a quality and sturdy tripod as cheap ones can be prone to wobble.  Moreover, though not that crucial in night photography, having a cable release would also be helpful so that you don’t have to touch your camera when taking pictures.

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If you want to specialize in night photography, investing in a fast lens is recommended.  Since a larger maximum aperture is a feature of fast lenses, they can deliver greater light intensity and allow faster shutter speed.  Ergo, you don’t have to worry that much about noise distortion when you take photographs under low light conditions.

Camera Settings

You need to adjust the settings of your camera when you take photos in low light conditions.  You can allow more light into your camera by raising your camera’s ISO settings.  To maximize the volume of light that you let into your camera, combine higher ISO settings with longer shutter speed.  However, increasing your ISO setting can also increase the amount of noise you may capture on your photographs.  Some recommend using a larger RAW format to help fight image noise and to achieve more detail in your photos.  Finding the right setting combination can be consuming and quite tricky so don’t be afraid to experiment until you get it right.

Capture Motion

Night photography offer many opportunities and subjects that are unavailable during daytime.  One of the most common techniques among night photographers is capturing motion.  You can capture trails of light, for example, by recording streams of light left behind from cars’ headlights and brake lights.  You can adjust the amount of time your lens is open for each photo by using your digital SLR camera’s BULB setting.  However, do not keep your lens open for so long because the longer you keep them open, the more noise will register on your photograph.

Lighting

A lighting kit can come handy when you are shooting at night or under low light conditions.  This kit will help you when taking photos in very dark conditions and will allow you to light your image however you want.  However, these lighting kits can be quite expensive.  If you want to improve the built-in flash of your camera, your more affordable alternative would be to use a flash gun.  Instead of having a straight-on flash, you can direct the flash wherever you want with a flash gun.

I hope you found this helpful in some way…

Ray Baker