Night time photography that looks like night time.

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by Garbz, Dec 13, 2005.

  1. Garbz

    Garbz No longer a newbie, moving up!

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2003
    Messages:
    9,713
    Likes Received:
    203
    Location:
    Brisbane, Australia
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    Ok I was trying to take pictures of the graveyard the other day at midnight. A friend was with me. We couldn't really figure out how to get an scary night time picture out. We did get some fantastic photos but at the 45-120second shutter speeds the shots called for the sky was light up like day and so was everything else. Asside from the blurry trees the photos look otherwise ordinary.

    How do you photograph at night time retaining the actual night work. The problem with dramatically underexposing is that I get prints back grey not dark. And generally orange not blue
     
  2. photoboy15

    photoboy15 TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2005
    Messages:
    130
    Likes Received:
    1
    The problem with night photography is that our eyes are more sensitive to light than the camera. Unless you have artificial light the sky will be brighter, in most cases, than any objects. You camera will meter you situation as it would day, for middle grays. So, you need to adjust your meter a couple stops so that the situation is darker. The problem is that you will start loosing detail. Something that you can do to help that is make sure the moon is at you back so that it will help illuminate any objects and not be lighting up the sky in front of you. Oh yea bracket by a few stop might help too.
     
  3. Rob

    Rob TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2005
    Messages:
    6,217
    Likes Received:
    134
    Location:
    London
    Firstly, I think you're over-exposing, not under-exposing to get that grey thing - to prevent this, just reduce the exposure time.

    There are loads of tricks. One good one is to set your exposure to an amount which won't light the sky and use a flash gun set on minimum to illuminate selected parts of your scene.

    Good luck!

    Rob
     
  4. Garbz

    Garbz No longer a newbie, moving up!

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2003
    Messages:
    9,713
    Likes Received:
    203
    Location:
    Brisbane, Australia
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    ok well it's definitly underexposing. Overexposing would make all the objects a bit brighter but they are definitly darker.

    I wonder if an ND Grad filter could be used to darken the sky in this case, alhtough setting it up will be a downright impossiblity. I do like the flash idea though.
     
  5. Silverpenguin

    Silverpenguin TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2005
    Messages:
    313
    Likes Received:
    7
    Location:
    West London, UK
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    I'd say go for a much shorter exposure. I have done several night time photos in central london and although some of them came out with an orange sky due to light pollution, the majority had solid black skys.

    If you are getting orange colour casts from street lights etc I think you can get a filter which counters this - if your shooting with film that is? Otherwise just adjust the white balance and your away :)

    Unfortunately I dont have any of my long exposures online (yet) to link to except for this one, which was taken of an outdoor photography exhibition at about 10pm. The shot was hand held (resting on a fence though) for about 1/5 sec. Not 'really' a long exposure I know but using it as an example that you don't always need a long exposure at night.

    [​IMG]

    If you'd like to see some examples of my proper long exposures please drop me a pm and I'll happily email you some :)
     
  6. Rob

    Rob TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2005
    Messages:
    6,217
    Likes Received:
    134
    Location:
    London
    Nope, you need to underexpose. Adding an ND filter in a low contrast lighting situation at night will make the whole frame go grey. You need contrast as your subject is insufficiently lit to allow a correct exposure without lightening the sky.

    This is the reason most night shots are cityscapes, not graveyards - there's lighting in there which provides the contrast. Here's one of mine which hasn't been photoshopped - you'll notice that the sky is pitch black even in the middle of London on a winter's eve.

    [​IMG]

    Here's a shot where the contast of subject to background wasn't enough to darken the sky - the problem you're experiencing.

    http://www.stmarysbeddington.org.uk/Church images/Gallery/Harold_-_snow_-_night.jpg

    Rob
     
  7. Silverpenguin

    Silverpenguin TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2005
    Messages:
    313
    Likes Received:
    7
    Location:
    West London, UK
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    Rob, I have a very similar shot of the Lloyds building. I went up there about 4 years ago wen I first got in to photogrpahy. I must go back up there and get some in digital.

    Great shot by the way :)
     
    • Like Like x 1
  8. Rob

    Rob TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2005
    Messages:
    6,217
    Likes Received:
    134
    Location:
    London
    Cheers, that was shot on Reala 100 with my F3HP using a circular polarised filtered Nikkor 20mm f2.8 @f22 for approx 5-30s (AE).

    Rob
     
  9. Garbz

    Garbz No longer a newbie, moving up!

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2003
    Messages:
    9,713
    Likes Received:
    203
    Location:
    Brisbane, Australia
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    yeah that's the problem
    I may just photoshop something and see if i can make do with what i have
     
  10. Dave_D

    Dave_D TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2005
    Messages:
    372
    Likes Received:
    5
    Location:
    Garden State
    Post a few shots and let us see what you came up with.
     
  11. Garbz

    Garbz No longer a newbie, moving up!

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2003
    Messages:
    9,713
    Likes Received:
    203
    Location:
    Brisbane, Australia
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    ok so my scanner finally works again, excuse the poor quality. But here's what i came up with when I was out photographing. I was trying for a creepy night pic. The only thing that's really creepy was the trees and the colour tones. But still it wasn't what I was after.

    [​IMG]
     

Share This Page

Search tags for this page
how it looks like night time
,
how to edit pictures to look like nighttime
,

night photos that look like day

,
night pictures that look like day
,
night time photographers forum
,
nightime pictures of the sky that look like daylight
,
photography night look like day
,
pictures taken at night looks like day
,
scary night time pictures
,
spooky creepy grave sky