The Night photography is a very beautiful and interesting part in Photography. There are many things to shoot at night. If you are living in a densely populated city with lot of skyscraper then you can have beautiful Cityscapes, Light trails of moving vehicles, or if you are living in a distant village then there are possibilities to shoot Milkyway or Startrails or night life of that place.
The Night photography provides very interesting insights of your camera settings. Night photography pushes the Camera to the edge of its performance. You can understand how well Camera is performing in the low light ? What is the image quality with changing ISO? How to get a proper exposure with changing the shutter speed. And most important factor is understanding the focus. In the day time its very easy to focus on any object with ample light, but as light goes down then it becomes hard for camera to focus with low light.
There are few things which are must for getting sharp, noise less long exposure shots in night. First and most important thing is the Camera. You must be aware of the minimum ISO which can be set on your Camera model to avoid noise. Then comes the Shutter adjustment. Most of the Camera models provide exposure up to 30 secs followed by Bulb mode. In Bulb mode the Camera shutter can be kept open maximum up to 30mins with first trigger to open the shutter and second trigger to close the shutter.
Also you need to have a Wired Switch or a IR/RF Remote to trigger the click. The Remote/Switch helps to avoid Camera shakes which may occur if you are directly pressing the Shutter button on Camera body. The last and most important thing is the Tripod. Tripod is a must thing for Night photography, tt helps to keep your Camera stable through out the shot. Always have a good quality sturdy Tripod which can support the weight of Camera body and the lens and can withstand the strong winds. With a robust Tripod you will always have better long exposure shots in varying environment conditions. And also Tripod should be easily adjustable horizontally and vertically to compose your shot.
Other than Camera, Tripod and Switch/Remote one more important thing is the lens. The selection of lens depends on what you want to shoot. If you want to shoot a Cityscape then Wide angle lens(10mm-24mm) or Kit lens(18mm-55m) are good to go. Or if you want to zoomin into a particular subject like a bridge with beautiful lights at some distance then you can opt for a Telephoto zoom lens also (200mm or more). But always keep in mind that as we increase the zoom, the exposure goes down and to compensate it we need to adjust the Shutter speed. To have a sharp image Aperture from f/8 to f/13 is good to go.
Getting a proper focus in night is sometimes a troublesome thing because of low light. Best thing to do is to first compose the shot and then focus on the brightest part in the frame then use digital zoom to lock the focus and now its all set to go for the shot. In nights its hart to get a perfect image in one go. Try multiple shots with changing the exposure and tryout multiple compositions. All the best for beautiful night shots and also let me know your feedback if this articles helped you to have better clicks or not.
Leaving you with few more of my night clicks.
You can observe a little shake in the photo of Eiffel Tower, this is because of my mistake of not using a Tripod.