thirteen Amazing Night Photography Ideas

13 Amazing Night Pictures Ideas

Night photography ideas (+ easy tips)

Night photography is an incredible genre, one that offers a near-constant supply of excellent photo opportunities. However , if you’re a night photography newbie or you’re looking to expand your night photoshoot horizons, then you might benefit from some motivation.

That’s exactly where this article comes in handy. I share 13 of my favorite night photography ideas, and am also offer plenty of tips, methods, and examples along the way. (Of course, don’t limit you to ultimately the subjects I suggest; instead, use them as a jumping-off point for non-stop nighttime enjoyable. )

When you’re finished reading, you will be feeling inspired – and you’ll have plenty of evening photoshoot ideas for gorgeous images!

Let us dive right in.

1 . Reflections

If you’re looking for an easy night photography idea – one that you can use in practically every city, big or small – then look out for reflections .

After all, most cities have got plenty of modern office structures made of glass and steel, and while these aren’t frequently photogenic subjects on their own, the particular glass and steel provide great opportunities for taking reflections of nearby functions.

In addition, at night, glass can show up particularly reflective.

Night photography ideas

The bright lights of the city may show up clearly in the facades of buildings, and the ensuing photos can look motion picture and even surreal.

Of course , water presents an excellent opportunity for capturing reflections, as well. Ponds, lakes, and even fountains can work great for this, yet I do recommend you use a slow shutter speed to eliminate water ripples; that way, the particular reflection will show up more clearly.

2 . Streaking lights

Night photography ideas

Streaking headlights and taillights look amazing, they will add a sense of motion to the scene, and they are a great way to do with the problem of traffic in your photos.

Here’s ways to capture stunning light-trail shots :

Start by dialing in the slow shutter speed. (you actually will typically need to take at 15  seconds or even longer to allow enough time for that vehicles to move through your framework. ) Then set a midrange  aperture (around f/8) plus a low INTERNATIONALE ORGANISATION FÜR STANDARDISIERUNG (100) to avoid overexposure, then adjust based on conditions.

Once you have your camera setup, mount it on a tripod, then wait until visitors is about to enter your frame. Trip the shutter!

In case you follow these instructions, the particular shutter will stay open while the traffic moves through the frame, and only the headlights and taillights of the passing vehicles  will show up in your picture.

Where should you go to find good locations for streaking lights? That depends. If you just desire the streaking lights to accentuate the scene, then you definitely can  go practically anywhere: city centers, suburbs, parking lots, even rural roads.

If you want the streaking lights to be the centerpiece of your photo, however , you will have to find a vantage point looking over a highway or a main street. Bridges and overpasses work great for this. Parking garages that are next to a highway can work great, as well.

3. Skylines

Night photography ideas

Skylines nearly consistently look great during the night. The buildings will be lit, and they’ll contrast against the black sky.

Plus, you won’t have to worry about a lot of things that result in problems during the day; there will be simply no glare from front-lit structures, nor will there be shadows from backlit buildings. For the most part, impair conditions don’t matter, either.

The key is to find a good vantage point. If your city has a river or even bay you can shoot across, scout out potential areas in advance, then head over when the sun sets. Another good choice is an elevated point looking over the skyline (look to get bridges and overpasses). When searching for overlooks, Google Maps Street Look at is your friend!

4. Monuments

Night photography ideas

The best part about taking photos of monuments at night is that they’re usually well lit – and the inky background as well as the artificial lamps create an effect that viewers aren’t utilized to seeing.

The particular worst part about monuments is that, even at night, they could attract a lot of people. Fortunately, long exposures can help you out; by dialing in a lengthy shutter speed (over 30 secs, so you will need to use Bulb mode), people that happen to stroll through your scene will not appear in the final picture. Of course , if the people happen to prevent walking and stand around in your frame, they will appear, and you’ll need to make use of the Clone Stamps tool in Photoshop   to get rid of them down the road.

One suggestion: Monument lights aren’t maintained all night. In my experience, they go away around midnight, so make sure you arrive at least an hour or two ahead of time to get your shot.

5. Fireworks

Night photography ideas

Fireworks are a traditional night photoshoot idea, and for good reason:

These people look amazing, and cameras are uniquely capable of taking their splendor.

Note that you don’t have to wait until the 4th associated with July to find a fireworks display; many cities and cities now have fireworks on a regular basis as a way to draw people to nearby businesses. For example , the picture  above – of fireworks over St . Louis – was taken on an accidental weekend. And I live close to a lake in Texas that has fireworks every weekend break during the summer. So go on over to Google and see if you possibly can find a fireworks display in your area.

The key in order to capturing fireworks is to use the appropriate shutter speed and to time the explosions. In my experience, the 10-15 second shutter velocity works well – it provides sufficient time for the fireworks to fully explode, but it isn’t so long that the fireworks have time for you to fade.

Trigger the shutter possibly the dot of the firework going up. That way, your image will capture the huge increase from beginning to end.

6. Individual structures

Night photography ideas

I know, it sounds boring, but do not overlook shots of individual buildings.

Yes, if you photograph an  individual building during the day, you will often end up with a bland image. But you’d be surprised by how certain buildings look at night! Therefore go on a city walk, take your camera, and look for architecture with interesting lights!

Don’t look only for brightly lit buildings, even though. Industrial buildings and moments feature great shapes and textures; they often look better than modern facades. While you might not need to be wandering around an abandoned factory (especially at night! ), there are plenty of historical public structures and working factories you can photograph from the street.

7. Streetlights

Night photography ideas

This particular night photoshoot idea is usually quick, easy, and tons of fun.

Wherever you go, keep an eye out for streetlights. And do your best in order to capture them!

One streetlight is wonderful, especially when you can combine this with lots of negative space for any minimalist impact . Rows of streetlights are even better!

Since you’ll be photographing lights, you’ll need to be cautious not to create spots associated with overexposure (unless that’s the effect you’re going for, of course! ). If you’re after a cool effect, narrow your aperture to f/16 or so; that way, the particular lights will turn into a twinkling starburst!

7. Carnivals

Night photography ideas

Carnivals are all about shiny lights, vibrant colors, and movement – which means they’re great places for the (well-prepared) night photographer.

Of course , carnivals don’t occur every day, so you’ll need to plan ahead. Most urban centers have publications listing most of upcoming events, and if you can not find one of those, you can check the guidebook for your city.

Once you’re at the carnival, set your publicity so your shutter speed is within the 8-15 second variety. That way, you can capture the movement of rollercoasters, Ferris wheels, and other spinning trips in your shot. You can usually set a low ISO to maintain noise under control, and you can select a moderate aperture for sufficient depth of field.

9. Museums

Night photography ideas

Museums are usually designed to be shown off. As a result, most museums present dramatic facades, are accessible to the public, and are wonderfully lit at night.

In other words, they’re an excellent night photoshoot subject.

Plus, you don’t have to search hard for museums. Almost every museum will be listed in guidebooks, on tourism websites, and Google Maps. (There are often a number of museums to choose from! ) Simply find the most attractive one – try searching Google Images – and check it out.

Once you find a great museum, the key to success is composition. Start with the obvious frontal shot, but then work the scene from there, trying out different angles and points of views. See if you can find interesting downroad subjects to add depth, and don’t forget to shoot the little details.

10. Neon signs

This isn’t a night picture taking idea you can use in every location, but many cities – especially the big ones, their best York and London, are full of beautiful neon signs.

Signs are super easy to overlook, but once you know to maintain an eye out, you’ll probably see them popping up everywhere.

Note that a person don’t need to fill the particular frame with the neon sign. You can use the sign sides to frame another subject, or you can use the sign to offer foreground interest…the opportunities go on and on. This next image needed a wide-angle lens in order to encompass just about all (or most) of the neon signs in a New York City square:

Night photography ideas

Make sure to expose properly, though. Neon signs, like streetlights (discussed above) are usually bright, and it’s easy to end up with clipped highlights. Look at your LCD often , and if you’re not getting the results you enjoy, try using an HDR technique to keep detail in the highlights and the shadows.

11. Overlooks and sights

Night photography ideas

A good view can make for amazing pictures at any time of the day, and night time is a special time whenever cities come alive with lamps.

Finding an excellent view can be difficult, however. Parks and towers are often closed at night, while parking garages offer spotty access. My personal favorite way to find views is to search city guidebooks; sometimes, there might even be a section on the best views. In case that doesn’t work, have a look at tourist blogs and internet sites, many of which offer lists of lookout spots.

One warning: A great look at does not necessarily make an excellent picture. The  key to success often lies in the particular foreground. Make sure to include a close up element of interest that draws or potential clients the audience to the stunning background.

12. Bridges

Night photography ideas

Struggling to find the night photo subject? Find a bridge!

Your city may not have the Brooklyn Bridge or the Golden Gate Bridge, but I can almost guarantee you it will have a bridge of some type and that it will be properly lit at night. Almost every main city is built on a river or a bay, meaning you will have bridges. And the bridges are always lit.

For the most compelling pictures, you’ll want to find a good vantage point. Google Maps Street Watch is helpful; you can find the main connections in your city, then just (virtually) walk around. Be sure you find a place to park, as this can often be difficult around bridges.

When out shooting, consider special notice of the drinking water under the bridge. For one, fast-moving water looks great when shot with a long direct exposure; the long exposure period will smooth out the water, developing a beautiful effect. Additionally , the lights from the bridge will most likely create reflections in the drinking water – so if you can place your camera so the drinking water constitutes your foreground, the outcomes will be amazing.

One more thing: When photographing the bridge, don’t overlook the transferring traffic. You might be able to integrate streaking lights from the cars into your shots. As with any light-trail photography, make sure you fire the particular shutter right as traffic is about to enter the frame.

13. Fountains

Night photography ideas

A lot of central plazas and pieces surround a fountain, that are (usually) brightly lighted at night. What’s more, taking photos of at night works to your benefit: the slow shutter speeds required by the lack of gentle allow the water to circulation while your shutter is certainly open, making the water appear beautiful and smooth.

Start with a low in order to midrange ISO (100-400) plus a moderate aperture (around f/8). Then adjust your shutter speed to get the correct exposure; this will generally result in a sufficiently slow shutter speed to make smooth, flowing water.

Night photography tips: final words

Now that you’ve finished this article, you should have plenty of night photoshoot ideas – and you are hopefully ready to head out and take some beautiful long exposures.

Therefore pick a few of these night time ideas, do a bit of analysis, then grab your camera and have fun!

Now over to you:

Which evening photography ideas do you plan to use on your next photoshoot? What are your favorite nighttime topics? Share your thoughts in the comments below!






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