Photo by Ryan Hutton on Unsplash

How Exposure Impacts Night Time Photography

Elizabeth Ewen

Elizabeth Ewen

How Exposure Impacts Nighttime Photography

To prepare yourself for Aurora photography, it is critical that you become familiar with how your camera works in the dark under various low light conditions.

Photo by William Bayreuther on Unsplash

Well before you depart for your aurora adventure, take your camera out into the darkness of the nighttime and experiment photographing in a variety of low light situations.

Photo by Ryan Hutton on Unsplash

In the examples below, you will see how exposure will impact nighttime photography.  The environment consisted of almost complete darkness, with only the dim glow of a light inside the tent and the glow of a full moon hiding behind the cloud cover.  By only changing the exposure time, and keeping all other factors the same, you can see how exposure time will create a photograph in the darkness that ranges from a very bright photo with lots of background exposure to a darker photo that creates a dark outline of the treeline in the background.

Tipi

30 Second Exposure

Aperture: 2.8

ISO: 800

Focus: Infinity

Camera Setting: Manual

Tripod Used

Camera: EOS Canon Rebel T6i

Lens: Tokina Wide Angle

Light Conditions: Darkness with a light glow from the tent and a full moon behind the clouds.

Tipi

8 Second Exposure

Aperture: 2.8

ISO: 800

Focus: Infinity

Camera Setting: Manual

Tripod Used

Camera: EOS Canon Rebel T6i

Lens: Tokina Wide Angle

Light Conditions: Darkness with a light glow from the tent and a full moon behind the clouds.

Tipi

2 Second Exposure

Aperture: 2.8

ISO: 800

Focus: Infinity

Camera Setting: Manual

Tripod Used

Camera: EOS Canon Rebel T6i

Lens: Tokina Wide Angle

Light Conditions: Darkness with a light glow from the tent and a full moon behind the clouds.

TRY IT YOURSELF!

  1. Find a low light setting 
  2. Set your camera to manual
  3. select 800 ISO 
  4. Fully open your aperture with your focus on infinity

Every camera responds a little different.  I only suggest these settings as a starting point to experiment with exposure.

NEXT...

Once you are set up in the field, take three pictures starting at a 30 second exposure, then an 8 second exposure and finally a 2 second exposure.  Examine your photos and note how the shorter the exposure time, the more darkness appeasers in your subject matter.  Now think a little about how you will want your aurora photo to appear.  Do you want a blueish colour sky with a clear view of background images such as trees?  If so, then you will want to have a longer exposure time.  Or do you want a darker sky that allows the aurora to pop out more with background images a little darker?  Then you may want to go with a shorter exposure.  ISO and Aperture also impacts the brightness of your nighttime photography but let’s become comfortable with exposure time before we look at those other factors. The time you spend experimenting with nighttime photography in advance of your aurora experience will greatly benefit the wonderful results you will capture with your camera once under the aurora.  

 

For more tips on nighttime photography, following this link below: https://www.roughguides.com/article/night-time-photography-10-tips-for-photographing-after-dark/ 

Michael Ewen

Raven Tours Ltd.

http://www.raventours.com 

We have recently added audio to all our blogs thanks to a recommendation.  We appreciate all suggestions!  

Share on facebook
Share on google
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on email
Share on pinterest
Share on print

Leave a Reply

On Key

Related Posts

What everyone ought to know about northern lights photography on a cloudy evening

Photographing the northern lights can be tricky because this activity is weather dependent. Typically people will constantly check the weather forecast the evening of aurora

Read More »
Aurora, northern lights, Canada, Yellowknife

夜空的耳语

夜空的耳语   清凉冷脆的午夜天空,翠绿的霞光翩翩起舞,把过去和现在连接起来。 暮色渐渐染浸了夜空,永恒的灵魂扶摇旋转,那是先人祈盼逃离尘域。   黄昏的天空暗淡下来,白雪覆盖了绿色的高山,星空下姹紫嫣红飘散。 在这朦胧的夜色之中,渡鸦张开它黑色的翅膀,向我靠近又将我高举。   忧郁之翼翱翔于空中,这是逝去之人呼唤吾名,悄声召唤着我的灵魂。 翠绿的极光降临夜空,再次翩然起舞壮阔美丽,我的灵魂也随之而去。   静寂的月光轻闻鸣吟,斑驳不语之影弥漫萦林,茫茫白雪漫裹着大地。 我又重回温暖的怀抱,橙色火光欢快闪烁跳跃,照亮远方的苍穹之际。   寒冷黑夜中极光带绿,已逝之魂借着翔翼低语,使原本静谧的夜更寂。 无尽的召唤午夜响起,渡鸦鸣叫呼唤我的名字,让我的灵魂穿山越脊, “我会回到你的身旁,无论何时我会回到你的身旁。” Share on facebook Share on google Share on

Read More »

How Exposure Impacts Night Time Photography

How Exposure Impacts Nighttime Photography To prepare yourself for Aurora photography, it is critical that you become familiar with how your camera works in the

Read More »
Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, Midnight Sun, Summer, Summer Season, Yellowknife's Summer

Yellowknife’s Summer Activities

As summer is approaching, we are all planning out our summer vacations.  For this summer, are you planning a trip full of adventure?  Or are

Read More »
northern lights, aurora

The aurora borealis from Jupiter

木星上空的极光 Image from NASA, ESA, AND J. NICHOLS (UNIVERSITY OF LEICESTER) and retrieved from http://www.sciencemag.org/news/2017/09/spacecraft-hints-source-jupiter-s-mysterious-auroras 极光在木星上也能看见,但是如果你不想去到那么远那么冷的地方,那么就选择和渡鸦旅游一起在地球上看极光吧。  说到木星,我们最为熟知的是它有一个大红斑。如今,哈勃空间望远镜联合朱诺号木星探测器,正在研究木星上另一个别致的景观——极光。哈勃望远镜负责观测木星上的极光,朱诺号则负责探测并研究木星上的太阳风和极光,这是望远镜和空间探测器之间达成的完美协作。 The Aurora over Jupiter Yes, the Aurora is

Read More »
aurora, tipi, Northern lights, Yellowknife, Canada, tipi aurora viewing

Why Choose Raven Tours + Video 🎥

Join Raven Tours for an adventure of a lifetime.  You will have the opportunity to see some of the best Aurora displays available on the

Read More »