Photography at night can be used to create amazing pictures. For this kind of photography a tripod is almost a must. If you want to get a clear exposure with a great depth-of-field, then you will need a tripod. Usually when we take pictures of sunsets or bright lights we just center all the coloring and shoot the picture.
But something that you should think about doing is adding some foreground item to frame and then shooting which will create a greater depth to the picture, and most of the time make the results look even more brilliant. This picture above was framed with two overhanging trees and a railing. The aperture was very narrow (high f/stop), and the shutter speed was about 10 seconds. Even though a tripod was used, the self-timer was used also, to eliminate any shake.
When photographing sunsets you should not only include foreground items but use the rule of thirds, specifically the horizontal section of thirds so you get a good perspective on the scene. The sunset picture right here was split up into about 2/3’s foreground and 1/3 horizon, but this same picture would probably still look good with 1/3 foreground and 2/3’s horizon.
Also, when you take the light reading with your camera make sure you don’t point it directly at the sun, if you do your picture will be underexposed. Take the light reading from the coloring around the sun so you get an exposure that is ideal to accent all the colors.
When trying to photograph fireworks or lightning you will definitely need a tripod. There are different techniques to doing this but probably the easiest is just setting your camera up pointed at a good range of sky and setting the aperture narrow (high f/stop) and setting the shutter speed very long or just by using the “bulb” function of shutter speed (the “bulb” function allows you to open the shudder and close it manually, so its not on a set time). Many people try this in different ways so its just good to experiment and try different things.
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