I used to be really afraid of taking photos at night, but the more I do it, the more I like it. It can seem very overwhelming – slow shutter speeds, low ISO, no vibration or movement, whether or not you should use a flash, dealing with obscure reflections of light off windows and using a tripod.
Fortunately, taking pictures of landscapes is pretty easy as they don’t tend to move very much. All you need is to be in a dark space (if you’re inside, turn off all the lights in the room) and have a flat, stationary spot for your camera (like a table or a window sill.) Turn your camera to manual, set the ISO to 200, close the aperture to f/8-f/11 and adjust the shutter speed to get an exposure that you desire. If you’re light meter says it is normally exposed, the night appears more like daylight as it is letting in more light. I like to purposefully underexpose it so that it is more accurate representation of what I am actually seeing. Make sure that you don’t move the camera when you take the picture or use a self timer to prevent any motion.
This past weekend, my mum and I had an impromptu road trip out to Vancouver Island. The weather cooperated really well for me to take the following photos (from the kitchen table at our cottage no less!) of night falling. I was amazed at how still the water was!
Here’s what the view looks like during the day:
After staying at our cottage, we went and visited my aunt and uncle in Victoria. This photo was taken from the windowsill in the room I was sleeping in. Isn’t it pretty at night?
How do you feel about night photography?