Best Lenses For Night/City Photography?

Started Jul 12, 2012 | Discussions thread
Sean Clark Regular Member • Posts: 108
Re: Makes more sense now

The exposure/ISO advice you've gotten is perfect. I'll add a few things.

Many tripods aren't really stable enough. Try bumping the tripod. If anything moves; if there is any secondary jiggle it's not sturdy enough for sharp long exposure work. Many electronic store tripods are like that.

You can hang weight from the tripod to stabilize it somewhat.

Most rooftops are a bit springy. Be still while the shot is taken.

Pressing the shutter button shakes the camera, and sets a wobbly tripod moving. Use the timer in the camera so some of that has died down before the exposure begins. If you do many shots like this, get a shutter release cord.

The mirror moving shakes the camera. With an APS-C camera and wide angle lens it likely doesn't hurt much, but we're trying for the best we can get. Somewhere in the settings, probably in the custom functions there is a mirror lockup mode that will raise the mirror in advance of the shutter being tripped. Turn that on.

If the camera is in an air conditioned space, the lens may fog when brought outside. Check for that and let the camera temperature adjust outside for a half hour if it's happening.

Atmospheric haze will blur distant buildings. Here in Houston, days after a cold front blow threw have lower humidity and clearer air for cityscape pictures.

The camera can't see as wide a range of light as your eyes. Except at civil twilight (best time for these shots), the building lights will be much brighter than the sky/surroundings. Use the cameras auto exposure bracketing to take several shots. Layer/combine the two pictures. Use the bright lights from the darker exposure, trying for a result that is natural looking as you can get. i.e. As close to what you saw.

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