How to shoot photos & videos at night
If you find yourself saying ‘I love photography, but I find it hard to take pictures when it's dark or low light’ then this post is for you! So let's talk about the difficulties of shooting in low light, and how we can overcome them.
Photography at night
Photography at night is a fun, challenging and very beautiful way to take photos. It requires a different approach than day photography but the results can be amazing.
When you are out shooting at night it’s important to remember that your shutter speed is going to be much slower than during the day and you will need to adjust your settings accordingly. Also keep in mind that if you are using an aperture of more than f/8, forget about stopping motion or blurring lights; it won’t work anymore because there is not enough light hitting the sensor for it to appear as anything other than black on your camera screen.
You must learn how long you need each exposure setting for specific situations before trying them out! A trick when shooting into darkness or with street lights as the background light source is using ISO speeds between 100-200 because this allows at least some wiggle room if something goes wrong during an exposure without having any unwanted consequences (like having too much noise).
Low light Photography Tips
- Use a tripod
- Use a wide aperture (f/1.8 or lower)
- Use a long exposure (10-30 seconds)
- Use an extremely slow shutter speed (2-5 seconds)
Low light Filming
- Use a tripod.
- Use a shutter release.
- Use a remote.
These three things will help you tremendously when it comes to low light photography and filming, as they all reduce camera shake or movement from the operator. If you have none of these accessories available, try to find some way of steadying your camera by bracing against something solid with your body (like the wall). You can also use a wide angle lens which helps capture more light than a zoom lens does and thus lessens the need for flash in dimly lit areas (although this does not always work). If none of these options are viable for whatever reason, then use an ISO setting between 400-800 (the higher end being better) and focus manually on an object that is near where you'll be filming; this will keep things sharp while helping bring out detail in shadowed areas.
More night photography tips and tricks
- Use a tripod (and/or a shutter release cable).
- Use a wide aperture lens and/or camera with in-body image stabilization (IBIS).
- Use an exposure faster than 1/60th of a second, preferably 1/320th or higher.
- Manual focus: The faster your shutter speed, the less time you have to get things right with auto-focus because it's going to hunt for focus quite often at fast speeds; manual focus gives you more control over how things look in your image without having to worry about whether or not the camera has found proper focus yet!
- Manual exposure: Again, this will be easier if your exposure is very fast (1/320th), but even if it isn't, using manual settings can help prevent motion blur while still allowing some ambient lighting into the shot through longer exposures (something that's tough with high ISOs alone).
Difficulties of shooting in low light
If you are new to photography and have a small budget, then the first thing that you should do is invest in a tripod. In low light situations, it is difficult to keep the camera steady without using one. You also need to use a shutter release so that your shot doesn't get blurred due to camera shake when taking the picture.
You will also need a good camera with a high ISO rating (this measures how sensitive the image sensor is) and know how to use your camera's settings like aperture, shutter speed and ISO value before shooting in low light conditions.
Filters for the night
Filters can be your best friend for night time photography. You can use a CPL filter to cut reflections on cars, a mist filter to bloom all those light sources, or a prism filter to get even more creative!
Now go out and take pictures … tonight!
In this day and age, you can take pictures literally anywhere. You can take pictures of anything, any time, and post them to your blog & social media. It doesn't matter if you're in a park or walking down the street—if it catches your eye and inspires you to point your camera lens at it, then go ahead and do so!
Now that you've learned all about the night, it's time to go out and take some photos. I hope this guide was helpful for you and got your creative juices flowing. If you take some photos / videos at night using Tide Optics filters then be sure to tag us on Instagram @tideoptics