Low Light Photography (Low exposure)

by am109145

In order to understand low light photography (low exposure) my first instinct was to Google ‘Low exposure photography’. These are the results that I have found within the ‘images’ drop down menu search:

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The images that have immediately stood out to me from these range of low exposure images are the following two:

IMAGE 1

Low-Light-Photography

IMAGE 2

bridge_low_light_long_exposure

I WANT TO RECREATE THESE IMAGES IN ORDER TO HELP ME UNDERSTAND LOW LIGHT PHOTOGRAPHY WHEN CONSIDERING SHALLOW DEPTH OF FIELD SHOTS SUCH AS IMAGE ONE ABOVE, ALONG WITH WIDER DEPTH OF FIELD SHOTS SUCH AS IMAGE 2.

HOW TO PRODUCE LOW LIGHT PHOTOGRAPHY IMAGES

FINDINGS FROM YOUTUBE CLIP:

There are 3 things that we as the photographers can adjust when dealing with low contrast of low light photography:

Increase sensitivity of the camera to light

– Open the aperture wider to allow more light in

– Keep the shutter open longer to allow more light to be recorded

INCREASING THE SENSITIVITY

The ISO setting on a DSLR camera adjusts the camera’s sensitivity to light. A low ISO setting tends to be 100 making the sensor least sensitive to light. An ISO of 100 makes it easy to shoot photographs outside in the day time, however we may find that taking photo’s indoors in the day time  will leave us with underexposed or darker photographs. If we are shooting indoors in the day time then it’s beneficial to increase out ISO to 200-400.

ISO 100 = Less sensitive to light = Natural Light 

ISO 6400 = High sensitivity to light = In darker environments 

Although increasing the ISO setting  will allow more light to be reflected onto the sensor the downfall of using a higher setting could result in ‘Image Noise’. When shooting with a higher ISO setting it is important to check that your are happy with the amount of image noise is the photograph, if you think that the image noise is acceptable and not so visible then the higher ISO setting is successful for the low light environment your in, if the image has a lot of image noise after shooting a couple of shots then it is important that you decrease your ISO setting and re-shoot. Normally there is a auto ISO setting within DSLR camera’s however on my NIkon D5100 there seems not to be a auto ISO setting.

DARKER = Increase (+) ISO setting

NATURAL LIGHT = Lower (-) ISO setting

SHUTTER SPEED

As it gets darker your shutter speed needs to stay open for longer to allow more time for light to hit the sensor. There is a “Shutter Priority Mode’ called ‘S’ setting that allows you to control and manually adjust the cameras shutter speed.

ISO SENSITIVITY ALTERATION EXPERIMENT 

IMAGE 1 – 1S0 LOW 1.0 – 1/30 shutter speed

IMAGE 2 – ISO 200 – 1/30 shutter speed

IMAGE 3- ISO 400 – 1/30 shutter speed

IMAGE 5 – ISO 640 – 1/30 shutter speed

IMAGE 6 – ISO 1250 – 1/30 shutter speed

IMAGE 7 – ISO 2500 – 1/30 shutter speed

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IMAGE 1

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IMAGE 2

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IMAGE 3

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IMAGE 4

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IMAGE 5

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IMAGE 6

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IMAGE 7

As we can see from the set of images above of the burning candle the amount of light vocalised from the first shot which has a ISO of 100 is less than the amount of light vocalised in image 7 which is much brighter, this is due to the ISO setting being on 2500 and the shutter speed being on 1/30 of a second and being set on tripod for minimal handshake.

Although there is some difference in the set of images that have been taken the big question is why is the difference in light not as obvious in these images if the image ISO has been increased by such a large amount? 

WHAT AM I DOING WRONG??

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