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Thread: tips for night photography

  1. #1

    Default tips for night photography

    I sort of playing around with Nikon D70. Resently have been taking pictures at night(landscape, mostly buildings). But the results are not that good. Meaning the pictures are rather dark and i do not get that much detail. I looking for tips on how to get a nice image with as much detail as possiable.

  2. #2

    Default Re: tips for night photography

    What ISO are you using? What aperture? How long is your exposure?

    Depending on the cam, you'll want to try an aperture of F2, F2.8 or F3.5, with a 10-15sec exposure at ISO 100.

  3. #3

    Default Re: tips for night photography

    Erm... 10-15secs are too long and at wider aperture you are allowing way too much light into yr camera's CCD sensor which definitely will produce undesireable results i.e. over-exposures, blown-up highlights on street lights and building lights, and un-natural sky/clouds colors (very brownish).

    Personally my usual practice will be at f/5.6 - f/8 will be just nice which also subject to the surrounding light environment. If the surrounding lights are too bright, use a smaller aperture with the smallest at f/11. Always avoid direct shoot at flood lights, spot lights & tungsten lights. Choose a good angular shot and compose it from there. Well you can choose to shoot at different modes i.e. Shutter-Priority (S), Aperture-Priority (A) or Manual (M). Never use Programmed-Auto (P) mode. Personally I use M mode which I can have more controls over the shutter speed and aperture.

    A sturdy tripod is a must and a cable release or wireless remote control to help reduce camera shakes. Use the lowest ISO, for yr case, Nikon's lowest ISO is 200 (preferably), for fine, less noise results. The highest you can adjusted to is ISO400.

    Since you're shooting digitally, it's good to slightly under-exposed rather than over-exposed as you can adjust it in Photoshop. If the sky/clouds still look brownish, use the Burning tool to burn in the sky to make it darker. Use Level (adjustment layer) to adjust the Shadows, Mid-Tones & Highlights of yr subjects followed by Color Balance adjustment layer. If you do not know how to use or control the Color Curves, then don't use it. You might accidentally alter the "true" colors.

    The above served as yr reference and it's still up to you to go out and do all the shootings and post-processing yrself to get the best results you can. From there you'll learn more and faster.

    Hope my 2-cents worth of info helps. Most importantly have fun!
    Last edited by Mezzotint; 12th December 2005 at 11:35 AM.

  4. #4

    Default Re: tips for night photography

    Here are 3 shots I did for yr reference only. They maybe good or bad but I hope it helps.







    FYI, the first shot was taken on film and the rest on D70s.
    Last edited by Mezzotint; 12th December 2005 at 11:48 AM.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: tips for night photography

    nice post mezzotint...

    i just bought a Nikon D50 and its great. However i'm a newbie. My night shots are not working well for me..

    Especially when u set the shutter speed too long picture comes out blur.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: tips for night photography

    Quote Originally Posted by Rashkae
    What ISO are you using? What aperture? How long is your exposure?

    Depending on the cam, you'll want to try an aperture of F2, F2.8 or F3.5, with a 10-15sec exposure at ISO 100.
    hav u taken night shots before?

    and d70 starts at iso200

  7. #7
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    Default Re: tips for night photography

    use matrix metering, if u used spot or center-weighted and happen to aim at a bright window or sign board, the overall pic will be dark

  8. #8

    Default Re: tips for night photography

    I think this question has been asked a few zillion times, do a search and a tripod is a must.

  9. #9

    Default Re: tips for night photography

    Quote Originally Posted by Mezzotint


    i like this..
    Stress Man @ work... :bigeyes:

  10. #10
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    Default Re: tips for night photography

    Quote Originally Posted by n0d3
    a tripod is a must.
    a tripod is advised, nth is a must my fren use his k750i oso can take nice pics at nite

  11. #11

    Default Re: tips for night photography

    Quote Originally Posted by roti_prata
    a tripod is advised, nth is a must my fren use his k750i oso can take nice pics at nite
    Oh really? Oh please you're talking about a phone that captures it in 1632x1224 and when viewed on that puny thing, anything looks sharp.

  12. #12
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    Default Re: tips for night photography

    maybe dont have to use a tripod.. just rest the camera on something solid to take the pic...
    i guess...

  13. #13
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    Default Re: tips for night photography

    too dark: increase exposure time
    more detail: use lowest ISO (200), shoot RAW or JPEG Fine, set Sharpening to +1 (or sharpen on computer), use suitable aperture (e.g. f/8 or f/11), focus properly (or use DOF focusing), use steady tripod (weight it down if needed) and release shutter gently (or use remote)

  14. #14

    Default Re: tips for night photography

    Quote Originally Posted by roti_prata
    hav u taken night shots before?

    and d70 starts at iso200

    Yup, why?





    Lots more that are not uploaded anywhere yet.

  15. #15

    Default Re: tips for night photography

    Quote Originally Posted by Rheo
    nice post mezzotint...

    i just bought a Nikon D50 and its great. However i'm a newbie. My night shots are not working well for me..

    Especially when u set the shutter speed too long picture comes out blur.
    Thanks Rheo! Well I seldom shoot night pictures with digital camera. I started out in film and i just love film photography especially shooting B&W at night which brings out more details than colors. Of cuz depends on what subjects or sceneries you are shooting at.

    Well just keep shooting and trying different settings to get the best results you desired/wanted. There are no hard and easy ways.

  16. #16
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    Default Re: tips for night photography

    thanks thanks yea.. already tried a few hehe

    anyway u stay balestier huh nearby
    ha ha
    bishan~~

  17. #17

    Default Re: tips for night photography

    Quote Originally Posted by k3nn3th03
    i like this..
    Thanks Kenneth! Here are some other shots I took with my medium format TLR camera in B&W film. They are part of my long-term photographic project, Nite Projekt which I started a year ago. There are other more which I wasn't able to scan them all yet.

    Well hope you like them too. Pleasant viewing.

    Quiet Lane


    Fountain of Youth


    Lurking...

  18. #18
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    Default Re: tips for night photography

    Quote Originally Posted by Mezzotint



    Quiet Lane


    Lurking...
    I like these 3 pic.

  19. #19

    Default Re: tips for night photography

    Quote Originally Posted by Rashkae
    Yup, why?





    Lots more that are not uploaded anywhere yet.
    Nice shots Rashkae! A bird's eyeview on the first one. But the sky colors on the 2 images are totally out i.e. too purple. Maybe you wanna burn the sky more to get a near-black tone to make it look more natural. May I know what camera did u use?

    BTW did you use a Star-Six filter for the 2nd image? It looks good and helps to make the image more dazzling. Think I should get that filter for my next night outing.
    Last edited by Mezzotint; 12th December 2005 at 05:21 PM.

  20. #20

    Default Re: tips for night photography

    Quote Originally Posted by Mezzotint
    Nice shots Rashkae! A bird's eyeview on the first one. But the sky colors on the 2 images are totally out i.e. too purple. Maybe you wanna burn the sky more to get a near-black tone to make it look more natural. May I know what camera did u use?

    BTW did you use a Star-Six filter for the 2nd image? It looks good and helps to make the image more dazzling. Think I should get that filter for my next night outing.
    Thanks!

    Yup, considered burning the sky. Those pics haven't gone through any PP at all.

    For the second pic, I used a star-8. Was thinking of getting a star-6 for different situations. But with the multitude of lights in that shot, the star-8 "felt" better.

    The first pic was taken with a Sony V1 from the 48th floor of a building. No tripod, I was holding the cam out the window... It's a very smoggy city, so there's a lot of "light pollution" which contributes to the brightness of the sky.

    The second pic was taken using a Sony H1, but again no tripod (as is obvious from the slight angle of the pic). Was just resting the cam on a balcony edge with the neckstrap around my neck.

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