Questions tagged [low-light]

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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76
votes
15answers
18k 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 ...
74
votes
20answers
137k 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 tried using a tripod, remote shutter release, low ISO, and long exposure, ...
42
votes
11answers
5k 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 ...
35
votes
10answers
4k 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 ...
29
votes
6answers
4k 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 ...
28
votes
10answers
11k 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 ...
25
votes
9answers
8k 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 ...
24
votes
8answers
27k 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 ...
23
votes
7answers
11k 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 ...
20
votes
5answers
10k 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 ...
18
votes
3answers
11k 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 ...
18
votes
4answers
1k 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
4answers
818 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
2k 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 ...
15
votes
8answers
2k views

What features would cause a portrait photographer to choose a DSLR over Mirrorless?

With the new line of mirrorless cameras being announced this fall, the gap between DSLR and mirrorless cameras continue to close. There are many generic discussions comparing the two, but as a ...
14
votes
4answers
5k 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 ...
14
votes
5answers
1k views

What exposure was used for successful pictures of the “blood moon”?

The moon in total eclipse is very dark, I discovered. My crop-sensor camera and f/5.6 lens was not up to it. I saw some "cherry red" photos in feeds, but without technical details. I used 1/125 ...
13
votes
7answers
4k views

How to know you've outgrown your equipment?

I have only started shooting recently, as a hobby. I use Canon EOS M100. I use a EF to EF-M adapter to use EF 50mm f/1.2L USM. The camera seems to have trouble focusing and light metering (with auto ...
13
votes
6answers
36k 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 NEX-...
12
votes
9answers
11k 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
6k 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 ...
11
votes
3answers
4k views

How do I take a photo so the moon doesn't have bright “rays”?

Any advice on how to remove moon "rays"? (Looking to learn how to take a photo without them, not remove them in post) Artistic opinion - is it too underexposed? The picture was shot at shutter speed ...
11
votes
6answers
12k 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
3answers
2k 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 ...
11
votes
3answers
641 views

How do I choose a lens for a “glow in the dark” indoor/lowlight event?

I was recently asked by a friend to take to pictures at a “Glow in the dark” event center meaning that it’ll consist of low light environment. I have a 320 EX III speedlite that I can use, but I would ...
10
votes
4answers
6k views

Blown out blue/red light making photos look out of focus

I've only recently started taking photos and got into shooting concerts in a small venue that has neither a pit, nor proper lighting. All they use is some kind of simple LED array. The thing is ...
10
votes
6answers
3k 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
2k 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, ...
10
votes
4answers
2k 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 ...
10
votes
7answers
1k 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 ...
10
votes
2answers
2k 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
7answers
397 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
576 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
6answers
26k 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 ...
9
votes
2answers
1k views

What's the best way to light up a subject that's far away?

I am shooting a wedding for a family friend, and one of the shots she would like is of them both standing on a balcony over a stairway. It's an old building they're getting married in, and it is a ...
9
votes
3answers
6k 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
4answers
6k 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 ...
9
votes
1answer
495 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
4k 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
3answers
3k 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 ...
8
votes
2answers
5k 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 ...
8
votes
5answers
3k 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 ...
8
votes
3answers
585 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 :(
7
votes
5answers
2k views

Does over- or underexposed give the most life-like post-edit results?

I have a Canon 600D with a 70-200 f/4 L lens, and I often photograph people outside in bright daylight. Now, I always shoot RAW and do some post-editing in Photoshop/Lightroom, but I'm not sure how to ...
7
votes
6answers
43k 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 ...
7
votes
5answers
955 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
2k views

How to avoid star-trails [duplicate]

I have a Nikon D3300 and I want to do astro-photography. I have a 50mm prime lens and by the 500 Rule, I can click only up to 6.6 seconds without having star trails. Any idea how I can do it without ...
7
votes
5answers
2k 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 ...
7
votes
3answers
270 views

Is video a good alternative to low available light photography?

I took a slow zoom and my mirrorless to a birthday party at a local kids' gym not knowing the light situation. It was dimly lit, and needless to say, the slow zoom + high shutter speed to freeze ...
7
votes
4answers
1k 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 ...