Night Photography Gear And Subject Suggestions
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Photography At Night - In this guide we show you how to make the best of long winter nights with some night time photography.
TripodAside from your camera, a tripod is the single most essential item in night time photography, when low shutter speeds are in use as hand-held photography is virtually impossible. It's a good idea to find a model that's lightweight and compact enough to carry around with ease.
Fast LensesWhen it comes to lenses, wide angle is often the way to go - the faster the better. An aperture of at least f/2.8 throughout the entire focal length is recommended as available light will be at a minimum.
Filters, Lens Hoods And Rain SleevesA filter is not essential, however a UV filter can be used to protect your lens from the elements. In harsh weather conditions a lens hood can protect the front of your lens from rain while a rain sleeve will protect your camera body.
Flash GunAn additional flash is a useful tool when working outdoors at night, and it's important to find one that's suited to your particular camera. Most flash guns will fit most cameras, but unless it's dedicated it won't work with the camera auto settings and could result in an incorrect exposure.
Light MeterNight photography can be tricky and your camera's built-in metering system may not be accurate enough to get the correct exposure, which is where a light meter will be useful. One that has an illuminated LCD would be best as it'll make viewing easier in low light. Various brands create light meters who have various models which are lightweight, small in design and feature LCD displays.
ClothingWaterproof and warm clothing is essential if you are going to be outdoors during winter for long periods. A waterproof jacket with a hood is ideal. Do wear layers instead of one thick jacket as you can always add or remove items if hot/cold. Wearing a good pair of walking boots and gloves is also a good idea.
Remote Shutter ReleaseAlso consider adding a Remote shutter release to your kit. A remote control will activate the shutter release without any need for contact with the camera, eliminating the risk of blur caused by camera movement. Do check that the remote release is compatible with your camera.
Your camera's self-timer can also be used as an alternative, preventing the need for contact at the time of the shutter release.
Camera BagA weatherproof camera bag will keep your equipment dry and well protected from the elements, and backpacks are generally easier to carry and more comfortable than any other type of bag. Take a look at our review section to find a bag that's suitable for you.
AccessoriesDepending on where you are planning to go to carry out your photography, a torch might be good idea as some areas will not have the benefit of street lighting. For those who prefer to keep their hands free consider packing a head torch.
If you are going to be outdoors for a while, a flask of hot tea or coffee may be a good idea.
What To Photograph
Buildings At NightShooting buildings at night can create a very different feel from the way they would look during daylight. Cityscapes are always a good choice, as are churches. Useful equipment for this type of photograph includes: Tripod, flashgun, wide lenses, light meter, torch and filters. Click the following links for tips on shooting buildings at night:
- Advice On Shooting In Towns And Cities At Night
- Photographing Night Time Urban Scenes
- Town / City Night Photography Tips
- Tips On Photographing Buildings At Night
- Photographing Architecture In Singapore
Moving Cars And Fairground RidesMoving cars and fairground rides are easy to find and can create some stunning streams of lights and patterns when done after dark. Experiment with different shutter speeds to see what effects can be created.
Useful equipment includes: Tripod, monopod, flashgun, light meter, shutter remote release and warm clothing.