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Tips for night photography

Travel Forums Travel Photography Tips for night photography

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1. Posted by Renuka S (Budding Member, 9 posts) 3 Mar '13 07:55

I have DSLR camera. I would like to know aperture settings for night photography. How to avoid blur images at night?

2. Posted by CheersT (Travel Guru, 1512 posts) 3 Mar '13 09:01

For a beginner it's not your aperture setting that's important for night shots, simply leave you aperture wide open.

Control the exposure using shutter speed instead, and also by increasing your ISO setting to as high as possible without generating noise.

Lastly, use a tripod at all times and release the shutter remotely, or set your shutter release to a 2 second delay. Either way allows you to take the photo without touching the camera so it remains steady.

Have fun.

Cheers,
Terry

3. Posted by Renuka S (Budding Member, 9 posts) 5 Mar '13 09:34

Thanks Terry! So you mean I need to keep shutter speed high?

4. Posted by CheersT (Travel Guru, 1512 posts) 5 Mar '13 09:45

Nope, your shutter speed will likely be quite slow - thus the need for a tripod to keep the camera absolutely still.

You will experiment with various shutter speeds until you get an exposure that delivers the shot you're after. I have nighttime shots that vary from a fairly fast shutter speed (taking a shot of a brightly lit street) to ones where the shutter is open for hours (capturing the stars in the night sky.)

Cheers,
Terry

5. Posted by CheersT (Travel Guru, 1512 posts) 5 Mar '13 09:55

Here's a nighttime shot with a fast shutter speed.

Here's some that took hours.

Cheers,
Terry

6. Posted by Sander (Moderator, 4366 posts) 5 Mar '13 17:17

FWIW, if no tripod is available, a nearby rock, park bench, trashcan, or nearly any other mostly stable, mostly flat surface will work quite well, too. Might at the same time help you find a more interesting perspective for the photo than the standard "taken from eye-height". For optimal results, set the self-timer to make the exposure only start 2 seconds after pressing the shutter, so that vibration from that act doesn't influence things anymore. (If the surface is stable enough, and you're not touching the camera at all, you can just keep ISO at its lowest setting, too.)

7. Posted by Renuka S (Budding Member, 9 posts) 11 Mar '13 01:33

Thanks a lot! I have another question - If I am taking landscape shots, general street or market shots or maybe capturing a building, what aperture/shutter settings do I need? I mean when I want to capture everything in a frame prominently.

8. Posted by CheersT (Travel Guru, 1512 posts) 11 Mar '13 09:49

Put your camera on automatic.

Cheers,
Terry

9. Posted by KellieBarnes (Admin, 597 posts) 12 Mar '13 19:12

By prominently I presume you mean in focus. Keep your aperture wide—say f8 for the market, f11 or 16 for grand, sweeping landscapes. Your shutter speed will be dictated by the light that's available.
In these situations you can use Aperture Priority (A or Av) to select the f stop and therefore depth of field (DOF) that is important to you.
You will only use Shutter Priority (S or Tv) when photographing movement or possibly if hand-holding in low-light (generally the lowest speed at which people can hand-hold without shake is 1/30).
Hope that helps!

10. Posted by Renuka S (Budding Member, 9 posts) 14 Mar '13 04:26

Thanks so much Kellie and Terry!