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Conditions where the ambient (existing) light is of a low level (dark). Photographers often use additional lighting equipment or long exposures in low light conditions.

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57
votes
15answers
9k views

How does one focus for landscape photos in very dark conditions?

Tonight I tried my best to take some night landscapes in the darkest of dark conditions. Hoping for an epic composition of the Milky Way and a landmark. Of course, none of my glass could auto focus ...
55
votes
14answers
66k views

How do I set the proper exposure for nighttime moon photos?

All my attempts to get a good shot of the full moon with my DSLR result in an overexposed circle on a black background. I've used a tripod, remote shutter release, low ISO, and long exposure, but ...
38
votes
11answers
4k views

How do I tell which point-and-shoot cameras take good low light photos?

I have a Canon Powershot A710 and I previously had a previous Powershot A-series model. I love them due to the high amount of control they offer. Sadly, they both suck in low light conditions, their ...
32
votes
10answers
2k views

What are some tips for shooting in low light?

I own a Canon 450D with just the standard kit lens that comes with it (I don't plan buying a new lens for a while) and one thing I tend to struggle with is shooting in lower light conditions, indoors ...
26
votes
6answers
2k views

Is it practical to shoot portraits by only candlelight?

Is it practical to shoot portraits in candle lights, only, provided there is no flash around? If yes, then for portrait shots, where and how should one place the candles? Are there any specific ...
24
votes
10answers
5k views

What settings should I be using to photograph fireworks?

As it's heading into firework season (with Thanksgiving, Guy Fawkes, and New Years), I've never been particularly successful at photographing fireworks. In previous years I think I've always had too ...
21
votes
9answers
3k views

How do I focus in low light for long exposures?

I've been trying to take some long exposure shots at night with my Canon 450D. The problem I'm having is that I can't seem to get a shot in focus. The low light conditions prevent AF from working at ...
19
votes
7answers
11k views

What should my plan be for photographing in a nightclub setting?

I'm going to be photographing in a club setting. Imagine a foggy atmosphere, with a lighting nightmare: everything from strobe lights to colored spotlights and everything in between, both bright and ...
18
votes
4answers
849 views

How to speed up autofocus on moving subjects under low-light conditions?

Since I am usually taking pictures under low light ambient conditions I have discovered the nifty 1.4 lenses (such as the Sigma 30mm/1.4 or the Canon 50mm/1.4 or also the Canon 85mm/1.8) for my Canon ...
18
votes
3answers
3k views

Why are larger sensors better at low light?

The top answer of What point and shoots are good in low light conditions? says that (1) a fast lens/wide aperture (2) reasonable ISO 400+ handling and (3) a large sensor when put together are critical ...
18
votes
4answers
708 views

How do I achieve fireworks pictures such as the hirobamboo method?

How do I achieve the abstract effect for fireworks that is sometimes referred to as the hirobamboo method? Specifically what types of lenses would work best for this, do I start in focus or out, ...
17
votes
7answers
1k views

Tips for shooting in an aquarium?

What would be your advises when taking shoot in an aquarium? What are your preferred lenses? How do you deal with the low light? What about the aquarium glass which bring some deformation? The fact ...
16
votes
3answers
4k views

Is it ok to use a lens hood in low light?

I have read some of the other questions about lens hoods (for example, this one) and I hope that this is specific enough to not be considered a duplicate. My understanding is that lens hoods block ...
15
votes
5answers
6k views

How do you make a shot look like it was taken at night?

Okay, so I was watching a movie recently, and there was a night scene. The whole valley could be seen in light, and there were some stars as well, and the actors could be seen, but it just looked like ...
12
votes
9answers
6k views

Why aren't my night shots sharp even when I shot at ISO 100 on a tripod?

I recently purchased a tripod because I really want to do some night photography. I have tried practicing with street lamps, moon shots etc with my Canon 550D and 70-200 f/4L and most of them are shot ...
12
votes
4answers
2k views

What can I expect in upgrading from built in flash to using a speedlight?

In pursuit of my low light photography passion I an considering purchasing a speed light. because I am so new to photography I am unsure of what the results will be using a speed light flash instead ...
11
votes
5answers
2k views

What camera settings would make shooting easy in a darkish church?

I tried to take photographs in a church that was bright enough for human eyes, but I quickly realized the camera couldn't take it. Failing to anticipate this, I didn't bring a tripod. Since I don't ...
11
votes
4answers
2k views

Is overall light gathering of a lens only dependant on aperture?

My impression is that the aperture value of a lens determines its light gathering ability, but I'm not sure I understand how it works... When considering light gathering in telescopes, it is ...
10
votes
6answers
2k views

Which prime lens to get after the 18-55mm & 55-250mm?

I started out with the 18-55mm IS kit lens on my Canon EOS 550D over a year ago, and added the 55-250mm IS a couple of months back to augment my telephoto reach (based on the recommendations in one of ...
10
votes
3answers
740 views

What's the best bang for your buck to improve low light portrait shots: Lens, Flash or Body?

I want to get better action shots in low light indoor conditions. I've got a Canon T1i (APS-C size) with 3.5-5.6 18-55mm lens, and am thinking about a flash upgrade, a lens upgrade, and/or body ...
10
votes
7answers
658 views

What are the properties of a camera that affect taking pictures in poor lighting?

I had recently bought a Nikon CoolPix L110, which was stolen a few months later. In searching for a replacement, I'd like to get something that takes better pictures in poor lighting. The zoom on ...
9
votes
7answers
349 views

What features should I look for in a DSLR to shoot live bands?

I'm trying to work out which DSLR to buy. One of my main use cases is photographing live bands in dimly lit bars. This often involves fast movement (particularly drummers) as well as low light. Which ...
9
votes
5answers
512 views

Is A mode a good idea when trying to take low-light photos of people?

I 'm wondering if my reasoning about a specific shooting scenario is correct. Suppose you are in a setting where: there is plenty of light from a human perspective but clearly less light than ...
9
votes
3answers
1k views

How to take photos of children in difficult lighting?

I recently went to a one-year-old's birthday party. The event took place inside; there was some light coming through the windows from outside and there was also light from the lightbulbs in the room, ...
9
votes
3answers
2k views

Optimal DSLR settings for an Indoor car show?

I am quite sure a bunch of folks from this forum are going to be shooting in the 2013 Detroit Auto Show, so here goes! I understand that optimal settings vary depending on the circumstancial lighting ...
9
votes
3answers
4k views

Do I need a full-frame camera for low-light photography?

I primarily shoot low-light photos, and I upgraded from a point-and-shoot to the Sony NEX-5R (which has an APS-C sensor) a few months back. However, I find that the low-light performance of the ...
9
votes
2answers
882 views

how to improve body scape shots?

This is the best of a series of shots taken of an athlete model. The image does no justice to the model because it lacks the peaks and valleys the model worked hard to get. there was a clear 6pack on ...
9
votes
1answer
338 views

What caused dark areas around bright light in this cityscape shot?

I know a little about cameras since doing two courses, and so I set my camera on manual setting most of the time to take shots. I took the following shot in New York of Manhattan at night. Because of ...
8
votes
4answers
2k views

Is a 50mm f/1.8 or 50mm f/1.4 a good lens for portraits in low light?

I only have one lens right now. It's the Canon 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6 IS kit lens. I think this lens is great when the lighting conditions are right but in low light I usually have to resort to flash. ...
8
votes
6answers
16k views

How should I set the Canon T2i for low-light?

I've got three lenses with my T2i - the kit lens, the Canon EF 50mm II and Canon EF 75-300mm 1:4-5.6 III. I'm going to a high school play and would like to take some stills along with some short ...
8
votes
3answers
1k views

Why are my city night pics more blurred than I expect, and what can I do about it?

I have a Canon 550D using a 10-20mm Sigma lens, with tripod. I have taken some photos of my city at night, and while the shots are ok... upon zooming in just a little you can see many lights are ...
8
votes
5answers
1k views

How do you white balance for a dance floor?

I was trying to take pictures of people on the dance floor at a big birthday party. With a disco ball, green laser lights, and other flashing lights of various colors, how do you get the white ...
7
votes
5answers
842 views

Wide-angle flash for outdoor nights, or poorly-lit ballrooms

I am trying to think of good techniques that can capture the full vibrant scene of outdoor night or poorly-lit events at wide angles. In my previous experiences, flash fitted with wide-angle plate or ...
7
votes
3answers
895 views

What causes these green dots in my image?

I just received a 35mm f/1.8 DX lens for my Nikon D50 for Christmas, and took some shots where the lights on the tree were the main source of illumination. Almost all of them exhibit very prominent ...
7
votes
4answers
603 views

Has low-light ISO performance really improved over the past 3-4 years?

I have a Canon 40D and I always shoot RAW. I am overall pleased with the 40D except for its low-light performance. Anything at or above ISO 800 is unusable for my taste. Just to solve this problem I ...
7
votes
4answers
1k views

Should I prefer raising ISO or lowering the shutter speed in a low light condition?

Example: 1. A "still" object/scene. 2. Night time. 3. The only light source you have is: a tubelight on a wall. Provided, you want sharpness all around so you won't maximize the aperture. Flash ...
7
votes
3answers
3k views

How can I accurately focus manually on an APS-C DSLR?

My favorite portrait lens is the Nikon 50mm 1.4G. I love the light and what it is capable of. My problem with it is that on my D90 the AF is sometimes horribly slow, and in many cases (mainly low ...
6
votes
5answers
11k views

How to Force my Nikon D5000 to take a photo in low light?

Every so often I try to take a picture in low light, usually indoors and find that my camera attempts to focus, grumbles a bit and then refuses to take the shot. This is annoying, not least because I ...
6
votes
5answers
1k views

Would a large aperture lens help against low light subjects being blurry?

I want to get nice shots with ambient light (meaning the natural light in the room of restaurants, living room with x-mas tree lights only...) so I can catch the glow of light on people’s faces as ...
6
votes
3answers
458 views

Photography in Darkness

I have a Nikon d3100. I recently shot a 16th birthday party. It's my 4the or 5th party and I've noticed the young people like it very dark. So much so, looking through the lens is like having your ...
6
votes
2answers
2k views

Why can't my camera autofocus in low light with a small aperture?

My question is not about "how to focus in the low light" or "how to focus a camera". The question is why the camera is unable to auto-focus in low light with high f numbers? In these conditions, I ...
6
votes
5answers
652 views

Can you recommend any resources about dance photography?

My main focus area in photography is dance; and at that mostly social dancing. This usually means: spontaneous action, no way to stage anything or prepare beyond being "in the moment and very ...
6
votes
2answers
620 views

What is the lowest level of luminous flux a camera can detect?

In the past, I've asked about taking photos of luciferase. Now I'm curious how weak of a light source I can detect. From How many photons per second is one Lumen? on Physics Stack Exchange, I can ...
6
votes
3answers
429 views

Is it possible to take silhouette photos with Nikon CoolPix S70?

Is it possible to take silhouette photos like this using my Nikon CoolPix S 70? if so please let me know how? I tried but getting blurry images :(
6
votes
2answers
416 views

Are there any tricks to make a pop-up flash suck less in low light?

I'm taking a lot of low-light indoor shots of moving subjects. I hate a the default flip-up flashes of most moderns DSLRs (in my case, a Canon 60D), but this is typically a point and shoot situation ...
6
votes
1answer
563 views

Are there any consumer digital cameras with grayscale sensors?

Are there any consumer grade (i.e. not ridiculously expensive scientific equipment) digital cameras that use "grayscale" sensors instead of the prolific RGGB bayer filter? I figure that you'd get an ...
6
votes
3answers
9k views

Nikon Coolpix P510 - Recommended low-light settings?

My wife was recently given a Nikon Coolpix P510 as a birthday present from her parents, primarily so we can take a - I believe the technical term is "****load" - of pictures of our new baby girl ...
6
votes
4answers
166 views

Reducing ambient color while preserving sharpness with a flash in concert photos

I have been shooting (small) live concerts with poor env. lightning for some years now with the help of F/1.4 & 2.8 lenses, mostly using a 160th shutter speed to make sure that the fast movements ...
5
votes
3answers
2k views

How do I get crisp indoor or low light images from my point and shoot?

I have a digital camera Canon PowerShot. I notice when I try to take any pictures other than a non-zoom, outdoor picture in good lighting the picture comes out blurry and grainy. I have tried a ...
5
votes
3answers
777 views

Reducing noise in very high ISO photos

On the weekend I attended a wedding and took my camera along. I was not the official photographer -- just a guest. My camera is a Canon 5D Mark III, and I was using an EF 50mm f/1.4 USM lens. At ...