Dave Johnson of PC World (syndicated on Macworld) whipped up a bunch of excellent tips on taking pictures at night.
Darkness is kryptonite to your photos—all cameras thrive on light. As the sun sets, your camera craves slower shutter speeds (which lead to blurry photos) or demands the flash (which creates harsh lighting up close and does nothing for subjects that are farther away).
If you gotta do it in the dark, at least take heed and let Dave Johnson’s advise help you get it right.
In addition, here are a couple of tips that might help too.
- Take the time to learn and then play around with your camera’s full manual controls (if this option is available). Get off the auto mode or the aperture-priority or the shutter-priority mode, or even the low-light and night modes. The ability to manually determine the exposure with the right combination of aperture, shutter speed, and ISO can yield (surprisingly) interesting images. Doing this takes a little bit more than pointing and shooting, but you’ll most likely get far better results if you’re in total control of the in-camera settings.
- One accessory that is almost essential in night or low-light shooting is a tripod. Get one of these from your friendly neighborhood camera or gadget-and-gizmo store. A tripod will give you the ability to perform long exposures that will let more light in while keeping your camera steady. And with a tripod, you’d be able to do a couple more things that will result in far more interesting images.
And, as they say, practice makes perfect!