Photo Feature: Night Shots
I love night photography… you can create such great images using light and movement. Below are a few of my favourites nighttime shots and a brief explanation of how/why I created them:
I was lucky to capture the moon alongside the Rockefeller Center on our last trip to New York. I am pleased with how the Rockefeller Center seems to just disappear upwards into the black of night. The bright Christmas lights in the foreground add interest and also cover up the less aesthetically pleasing part of the building. This photo was taken on my iPhone so there was no fiddling with settings, it was just point and shoot! Sometimes your camera/phone gets the settings right and sometimes they don’t… on this occasion it did a good job of assessing the light conditions!
I used a sparkler and a long exposure (10 seconds at ISO 100 and f22) to capture the swirls of light from the sparkler as it was being waved around by my daughter… the other effect caused by the long exposure of course was a blurring of the objects which were moving in the background (flames and people).
Similarly to the previous image, the blurring of the people watching the bonfire was created by using a long exposure (around 30 seconds at ISO 1oo and f22) and a tripod (crucial to avoid camera shake with long exposure photography)… I love the ghostly feel created in this image. It was easy to do but I think it made for an interesting photograph.
I love the bright light from the fireworks against the black of the night sky… Again, this was taken using a fairly long shutter speed (around 8 seconds at ISO100 and f22) to capture the streaks of light from the fireworks.
Fireworks, lasers and lights at Epcot… This is a more natural shot, as I avoided the slow shutter speed this time to avoid blurring the movement of the objects on the water. Bright lights near water at night often create great photos due to the interesting reflections they make. (Settings: ISO 250, 1/50 and f2.8)
Sunset provides the most beautiful light for taking photos. This is such a simple shot yet is effective purely for that reason. Your eye is drawn to the sun and its reflection on the water. I took a number of shots as the sun went down over the mountains to capture the different colours and effects as it disappeared. (The settings for this photo were ISO 100, 1/250 and f13.)
There is often an element of trial and error with night shots… it’s all about deciding how you want the image to look (do you want the lights to appear sharp or are you after trails of light) and getting the right amount of light onto the sensor. But how you choose to do that is entirely up to you…
So those are some of my favourite night shots… what do you like to photograph and why?