Or, as this post more appropriately should be titled:
A Dummy’s First Attempts at Night Photography
(I’ll let you know when I feel competent enough to write A Guide to Night Photography for Dummies instead. Just watch this space.)
Generally, I much prefer taking pictures in blazing sunshine – they seem to come out so much better with so much less effort. But since winter arrived in London (in as much you can call 10 degrees above zero winter), the only choice is between fuzzy-muzzy-grey or night scenes. I’ll take night any time!
The Lights on the London Eye
The other night I was seduced by the red lights and the geometric patterns of the London Eye (click the images to enlarge):
Have I Learned Anything?
No Night Photography with a Phone
Don’t bother taking night pictures with your phone: the result won’t be worth it. I have taken some perfectly good photos with my phone (see the Admiralty Arch here) but it proved a total waste of time at night. If you haven’t got a camera with you, you might as well just enjoy the lights in an ephemeral fashion and leave photography for another occasion.
Ready, Steady… (Click!)
It’s hard to take a night picture that isn’t blurred. You need steadier hands at night than at daytime. You could use a tripod of course; personally I ‘d be too lazy to drag it around even if I had one. Instead I prop the camera up on any handy fence, bollard or bin whenever I can. I once tried to balance it on the head of Young Friend of the Elephants (she volunteered) but I can’t say it worked, so I don’t recommend the top of your child’s head!…
Having to prop the camera up on or against something to keep it steady does limit the angle of your shots but at least the result might actually come out sharp. Besides it encourages you to try strange angles: in the fourth photo I propped the camera up against the pylon that holds the London Eye up.
Alternatively you can just practice steadying your hands!
Inspired by (and sadly falling short of) Geometry: Pic and A Word Challenge. This week I somehow ended up with a lot of photo posts: don't worry, posts about books are coming too!