Photographers who have photographed at night include Bill Brandt who
photographed the Second World War and post-War England; and Lee Miller, also a World War II photographer
whose work included a famous night image of the burning of Hitler's house.
Ansel Adams is also well-known for his photograph "Moonrise Over Hernandez"
which was shot by moonlight.
Digital Night Photography Tips: Contemporary Photographers
Moving forward in time to the late 1970's. we find photographers such as Steve Harper, Richard Misrach, Arthur Ollman and others who worked almost exclusively at
night. And from the 1980s we have Michael Kenna and Arthur Ollman who became head the Museum of Photographic Arts in San Diego. Keep an eye open
for these fascinating photographers if you want to expand your knowledge of night photography.
Grande Arche de La Défense et Fontaine - Pentax K100D, 3/5 sec, f/8, 35mm, ISO 200 - Photo by Atoma
Digital Night Photography Tips: When is the Best Time?
Dusk is a very popular time for making night photography and I recommend you visit your chosen location the day before and just walk around looking. Plan to come back
the next day a bit before dusk so you have time to set up your shot. You can get great results at this time of day and it makes it easier to read your camera's controls!
Notre Dame de Paris by Night - Pentax K100D, 8 secs, f/5.6, 28 mm , ISO 200 - Photo by Atoma
Digital Night Photography Tips: Use Long Exposures
Low light digital photography is so much easier than low level film photography because long exposures are needed which often require a lot of trial and error to get right. With
digital of course, all your shots can be reviewed and the exposure adjusted accordingly before the next shot is taken. Night digital photography allows exposures
that are several seconds long (for example, the photograph above of Notre Dame in Paris had a shutter speed of eight seconds) so that details can be captured. This means you will
need a tripod to avoid shake and preferably a shutter-release cable so you don't actually have to touch the camera or you can use the timer.
Perth Skyline at Night: Olympus FE110 X705, 2 secs, f/5, ISO 250, 17.4 mm: Photo by Mark Ryan
Digital Night Photography Tips: Bridges by Night
If you live in a city, chances are there is a river near by and rivers always have bridges which are usually lit up at night often in quite dramatic ways. There are also
great compositional opportunities as bridges have interesting geometrical shapes and rythmns. Make sure you get a good angle for your shot as there will be lots of extraneous
things like telegraph poles, railings, street lights and so on. If you can, try a low-angled shot to blot out all those annoyances.
Shelby Street Bridge by Night (Nashville): Camera Data Not Available: Photo by Ryan Kaldari
Digital Night Photography Tips: Reflections
While you are down by the water's edge making great photographs of the bridges, take a look at those wonderful reflections! Again, shutter speed is crucial here
but it mustn't be too long or you will burn out the highlights. Plan to be on the opposite side of the river to a great group of
buildings so you can create a 'sky line' type photograph.
The Beacon Hotel at Night, Miami Beach, Florida: Canon EOS-1D Mark II, 13 secs, f/11, ISO 50, 17 mm: Photo by Sandor Photography
Digital Night Photography Tips: Everything in Motion
Yes more long exposures especially when capturing motion as in the above pictures of car light trails. This photograph is 13 seconds. So don't just think in terms of
still images, try implying motion through the use of really long exposures - it's great fun, give it a go!
Seattle's Space Needle and Fun Forest on a Foggy Night : Camera Data Not Available: Photo by Chris Blakeley
Digital Night Photography Tips: Foggy Mysteries
I just love the above shot, taken on the sort of night when you could be forgiven for thinking there really wasn't enough light to make photographs. Detail has been lost, the
photograph is simplified down by the fog to almost monochrome. There is still a hint of colour in some areas making it all very mysterious! So don't be afraid to experiment
in unusual weather conditions, you never know what you might create!
Follow this link for some black and white
night photography tips (and some great shots).
Find Out More!
Shooting in low light and at night is challenging, but it can result in stunning images. Start
capturing eerie and intriguing photographs at all levels of light with
by renowned photographer and author Harold Davis.
In the book, he provides pages of field-tested techniques to help you find the proper exposures, including
the best settings for ISO, aperture, and shutter. Don't miss the intriguing examples
of his own work, including cityscapes, landscapes, and more.
The author walks you through the intricacies of night and low light photography and explores
the fundamental rules of exposure, including creative settings for ISO, aperture, and shutter speeds.
He will inform and inspire you with his own breathtaking examples of night photography, including
cityscapes, landscapes, exciting night events, and other photos that illustrate the concepts. Capture
the visually exciting world after the sun goes down with this essential guide to night photography.
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