Taking Photos at Night

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by Chicagophotoshop, Jan 25, 2007.

  1. Chicagophotoshop

    Chicagophotoshop TPF Noob!

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    I'd like to here from the pros about how to take the best night shoots


    from what I have heard, the "shutter"? needs to stay open.

    I use a NikonD100 and do not know how to do this, even after reading the manual.
     
  2. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    In order to make an exposure...the lens Aperture and the Shutter Speed...are controlled.

    The aperture is the hole in the lens, through which light travels (usually adjustable)...and the shutter is a curtain that opens for a specific amount of time.

    Modern cameras have a light meter built-in...which tells the camera (in auto mode) what size of aperture to use and how long to keep the shutter open.

    If it's dark (aka: at night)...then it will take longer for the camera to receive enough light for the exposure...which is where the long shutter speed comes in. If it's dark, the camera will automatically use a longer shutter speed. (provided that the camera doesn't decide to turn on the flash...check which mode is best to be in).

    The problem with long shutter speeds, is that any movement will show as a blur...so if you are holding the camera...your hands will shake and the whole image will be blurry. The solution is to use a tripod and a remote (or self timer).

    There is more to it...but lets just take it one step at a time.
     
  3. Chicagophotoshop

    Chicagophotoshop TPF Noob!

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    :hail: @ Big Mike


    If it's dark (aka: at night)...then it will take longer for the camera to receive enough light for the exposure...which is where the long shutter speed comes in. If it's dark, the camera will automatically use a longer shutter speed. (provided that the camera doesn't decide to turn on the flash...check which mode is best to be in).[/quote] is there a way to manually control the shutter speed?

    tripod check. wouldnt leave home without it :D
     
  4. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    There are several way to control the shutter & aperture of your camera.

    A Mode...is aperture priority...which means that you set the aperture and the camera picks an appropriate shutter speed.

    T (or S) Mode...is shutter speed priority...which means that you set the shutter speed and the camera picks the appropriate aperture.

    M mode...is manual. You have to set both shutter and aperture...you can use the camera's meter as a guide.

    P or Auto is where the camera sets both the shutter and aperture for you.

    What I would do...is use A mode. If you want a longer shutter speed, then just use a smaller aperture (higher number). You could do it with T mode...but you might run into the limits of your aperture...the shutter speed is less limiting so using A mode is easier.

    There is a third variable for exposure...and that is the ISO setting. Since you will be using a tripod, I suggest keeping the ISO at the lowest setting.

    You may find that the settings recommended by the camera...don't look very good. You may have to experiment and use a different combination. To get a different exposure in A or T mode...you must use EC (exposure compensation)...or use manual mode and just change one of the settings.
     
  5. Chicagophotoshop

    Chicagophotoshop TPF Noob!

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    thanks Mike I will give it a try.
     
  6. GilTphoto

    GilTphoto TPF Noob!

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  7. Chicagophotoshop

    Chicagophotoshop TPF Noob!

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