Where I live, Broken Arrow, OK,
we have the amazing Christmas lights at Rhema Bible College (here).
My goal this year is to brush up on how to photograph
outdoor Christmas lights. So in this post I'm sharing the tips I've fold
so I can easily review them in the future, or on the run, here they are ~
Recommended SLR camera settings (RE here)
- Use either a macro or an all purpose wide angle lens. A macro is useful if you want to seclude any one ornament or decoration. Where as a wide angle lens is great if you want to get the whole house into the picture.
- It's also a good idea to use a tripod, as the shutter speed will be too slow for sharp hand held shots.
- Set your camera on manual mode with a low as possible aperture f number. For example anywhere between f/2.8 to f/4.6 will be sufficient.
- For starters set the ISO to 400. Depending on how dark you want the images to be, you can adjust this later on. It's never recommend going higher than 800 however, due to loss of photo quality the higher the ISO.
- There are two ways to adjust the shutter speed. Firstly, you can focus the camera at part of the house that isn't too dark or too light and adjust the exposure. If you're not sure what I mean by exposure we have a tutorial on it at: How to use manual mode. If you like a darker photograph, then underexpose the settings by around 2 or 3 stops.
Or you can take a bit of a punt and initially set the shutter speed to around 1/50th of a second, then adjust it give and take from there. If the photograph seems too dark for your liking, then choose a slower speed (up to say 1/25th of a second). If it's too light then choose a faster speed. As the night gets darker and light changes you may need to adjust this.
- Put your camera on aperture priority and set the lowest f number your lens will allow, for example f/2.8 up to f/4.6. Again, it's a good idea to use a tripod. When using aperture priority, make sure automatic ISO is turned off. You do want to choose this setting yourself, so you can keep it to around 400 ISO.
I'm hoping these settings can also help
when photographing other light sources outside after dark.
Your suggestions are appreciated
so leave a comment with you advice...that would be great!
And please check back to see my shots posted soon.