February 13, 2013

Learn Night Photography

Night Photography Unlocked

One of the first things that interested me as a young boy just getting into photography, was shooting at night. I was fascinated by the way light was recorded onto film and the effects I could create with long exposures. Especially when using torches and a tripod.

Of course, I was rubbish at it. This was circa 1981 (aged 13-14)…

Night Photography Test

However, that didn't stop me trying and loving it. Trouble was, I had to wait two weeks for the prints to arrive through the post to see my results. Often very disappointing!

I experimented with all manner of techniques including:

  • Off camera flash
  • Star trails
  • Super long exposures
  • Slow shutter speeds whilst moving the camera

...and remember, this was all with a simple, basic SLR film camera at the age of about 14.

Digital Night Photography

Later on when I got into digital, I loved it because it meant I could see results immediately. That meant I could experiment and learn a lot quicker. Now I use night photography quite a bit and the skills I have learned come in very handy for wedding photography at night.

In the image below, I was on a 5 day trip to Italy to shoot a 3 day wedding and in my spare time, I shot a lot of night photography for stock:

Il Duomo Night Photography

And of course, the techniques used came in very handy when shooting the actual wedding. Because for each of the three days I was shooting, the events started early evening and went on into the night:

Italian Wedding at Night

Without the skills I had learned, this would have been a disaster and I could well have messed up the entire wedding.

It doesn't matter what genre of photography you are into:

  • Sports
  • Weddings
  • Landscapes
  • Property
  • Commercial

There will more than likely come a point where you will need to learn some night photography skills. Of course, practice makes perfect but to give yourself a helping hand and speed up the learning process, check out this brilliant course by Neil Creek, a seasoned, professional night photographer.

London at Night

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