Night photography refers to photographs taken outdoors between dusk and dawn. Night photographers generally have a choice between using artificial light or using a long exposure, exposing the scene for seconds or even minutes, in order to give the film enough time to capture a usable image, and to compensate for reciprocity failure. With the progress of high-speed films, higher-sensitivity digital image sensors, wide-aperture lenses, and the ever-greater power of urban lights, night photography is increasingly possible using available light.
Nature photography taken at night creates stunning, unique images that help raise awareness about green issues and appeal to a wide range of audiences.
Night Shot Techniques & Equipments
- A tripod is usually necessary due to the long exposure times. Alternatively, the camera may be placed on a steady, flat object e.g. a table or chair, low wall, window sill, etc.
- A shutter release cable or self timer is almost always used to prevent camera shake when the shutter is released.
- Manual focus, since autofocus systems usually operate poorly in low light conditions. Newer digital cameras incorporate a Live View mode which often allows very accurate manual focusing.
- A stopwatch or remote timer, to time very long exposures where the camera’s bulb setting is used. (source)
Night Shot Guide
- Choose the right camera. Night photo shoots are best performed with a manual SLR 35 mm camera. If you decide to work digitally, be sure that you have the ability to hold your shutter open, attach a shutter trigger and control aperture and shutter speed.
- Carry the proper tools, which include a tripod and a shutter trigger, so that you do not shake the camera while tripping the shutter during long exposures. It is also important to carry and hand held timer to track exposure time.
- Use medium or slow speed film to produce quality images. Even fast films will require long exposure times, however medium and slow films, with a bit of patience, will create the most perfect grain quality.
- Bracket your shots to ensure the perfect image. This means that you should guesstimate the exposure time for your shot, and then shoot at least two more photos, adding and subtracting time. For example, if you believe you can take a nice photo with one minute exposure time, shoot another at 30 seconds and another at two minutes.
- Capture motion by taking advantage of your long exposure times. Catch light trails of cars zooming down a freeway, or track the movement of stars in the night sky.
- Play around with the aperture setting. You have bracketed your photo, now try it again with a different aperture setting. A smaller aperture can help prevent stationary lights from overexposing the film, while a larger aperture can help prevent the presence of motion on the final image.
- Trigger a flash during exposure to create a surreal glow to your subject matter. This will make the background more obscure, while illuminating the subject you are shooting. (source)
Night Shot Gallery
Sydney Opera House
Kansas City, Missouri
Las vegas Balloonapalooza 2006 Carnival
US 169 and Briarcliff, Kansas City, MO.
The city of Seattle at night as seen from Gasworks Park
View from the top of the Mori Building towards Shinjuku
Kansas City, Missouri
Observatory of the Tokyo City Hall (Government Building)
Park Hyatt Tokyo Building Trio
Sunway Lagoon Resort
Night in San Francisco
Berkley Night Shot
Fullerton Hotel, Singapore
Singapore Supreme Court
Istana Park, Singapore