Capturing photos on a bright, sunny day is a piece of cake for any photographer. Any normal lens or basic photography skills will do the trick. But it takes exceptional skills and the best digital cameras to capture the moment when there’s less light around. Low-light digital photography pushes the envelope and tests your photographic skills. You’ll have to go all guns blazing to find more light to get a clear and crisp photo in such conditions. There are few tips that you’ll have to familiarize with to enhance your low-light photography.
Low-light Photography Tips
Use a fast lens
If you don’t have enough light around to focus on an object, use a fast lens. A fast lens is nothing but a lens with a wide aperture. The wider the aperture, the more light will be showered on the image. The disadvantageous aspect of a wide aperture is that it generates a shallow depth of field. Having a shallow depth of field can only be disadvantageous if you want to defocus the background. If you happen to use a DSLR, faster lens is easily available at a cheap price tag.
For this, you can go for the one with 50mm prime lens. However, if you happen to use a point-and-shoot, this tip will go in vain as the lens is already attached. The 50mm lens will come with an aperture value of f/1.8. The lower the number, the wider the aperture. F/1.8 is the maximum value you can go for because f/1.8 at 50mm offers an extremely shallow depth of field. This tip will help you let in a lot of light and get some amazing photos in low-light conditions.
Scale down the shutter speed
Shutter speed is defined as the speed at which the camera’s shutter opens and closes. The shorter the shutter stays open, the less light gets in. But the longer the shutter stays open, the more light will get in and you’ll get a motion blur. A slow shutter speed is helpful only when you are taking a landscape photo as nothing is really moving around. However, if you are taking a landscape photo at night, using a slower shutter speed will turn out to be ideal to do low-light photography.
Increase your ISO
ISO is measured by the sensitivity of your sensor to the light. The more the ISO, the more sensitive your sensor is. At lower ISOs, you get crisp representation of light. However, you can increase the sensitivity when you don’t have enough light around. In terms of setting the ISO value, ISO 100 or 200 is enough with the presence of life. Whereas, ISO 400 or 800 works for low-lit indoor conditions. Best digital cameras that have ISO ratings up to 3200 or higher. Keep in mind that if you unnecessarily increase the ISO value, the picture will come with higher noise levels.
However, the noise levels depend on the camera you use. A high-quality digital camera will eliminate the noise levels at higher ISOs. Setting up an ISO value of 800 on a shoot-and-point will create a little noise, but no noise will be created if you use a DSLR. As a matter of fact, this won’t be a concern if you are printing small-size photos.
Make sensible use of your flash
A flash washes off the subject and creates bizarre lighting effects. In some cases, it is useful as the light you have doesn’t do the job. In this case, you can diffuse the light with the help of the things lying around. Some people make diffusion out of paper or scotch tape that can be placed over it to generate softer light. The other useful options include the craft form, white plastic spoon, and empty cigarette packer or drawer liner.
There are also some best point and shoot camera available that can be equally efficient. Carry out all these steps and get better at low-light photography. Remember, practice all these tips before you enter a low-lit area before you invest in the best cameras and put your photography skills to test.