First Attempt at Night

Joined
Mar 25, 2011
Messages
325
Location
East TN
So this is my first attempt at shooting at night. I shot this photo from my apartment using my tripod. The original photo had some blemishes of some sort, so I tried to take them out in LR3.

The original. ISO 200, f/8, 4 sec, 70mm
004.png
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So which one of the next two do you all think is best?

Factory%20Color.jpg
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Factory%20BW.jpg
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Any helpful comments and critiques are welcome. I need to learn!

Thanks for looking
 
Joined
Mar 31, 2011
Messages
2,455
Location
Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Well everything seems well exposed and the highlights aren't blown, which is easy to do when you start trying night time photography.

I prefer the colour version. You'll find using auto white balance to be not the most accurate way of accurately representing a scene if you're shooting in JPG, but obviously in RAW you can adjust at home and not worry about it.

I don't know if you're doing the following, but if you don't have a remote shutter release I would recommend using delayed exposure and maybe mirror lock up as well to get everything tack sharp - sharpness and focus don't seem to be an issue in your first shots though.

My advice is to get out of the apartment and practise! Notice the smoke from the chimneys in your shot. With the long exposures at night you have free licence to get movement into your shots - be it clouds, water, stars, cars, whatever. I'd just recommend getting out there and experimenting. Longer exposures with clouds will produce some interesting effects and the reflections from light pollution can accentuate this.

Also, if there's nothing moving in your scene, just try bracketing and using a trial version of Photomatix Pro to try an exposure merge (or you can just use a single RAW file and convert several times at different exposures) - this will bring out more detail and micro contrast and help give images at night a little more pop.
 
Joined
Apr 1, 2009
Messages
263
Location
Tallahassee, FL
I prefer the color version for two main reasons. First, the colors are subtle but very aesthetically pleasing to the eye. Second, the B&W version is lacking a bit of contrast to me (just my preference). My vote definitely goes for the color one.
 
Joined
Mar 25, 2011
Messages
325
Location
East TN
Well everything seems well exposed and the highlights aren't blown, which is easy to do when you start trying night time photography.

I prefer the colour version. You'll find using auto white balance to be not the most accurate way of accurately representing a scene if you're shooting in JPG, but obviously in RAW you can adjust at home and not worry about it.

I don't know if you're doing the following, but if you don't have a remote shutter release I would recommend using delayed exposure and maybe mirror lock up as well to get everything tack sharp - sharpness and focus don't seem to be an issue in your first shots though.

My advice is to get out of the apartment and practise! Notice the smoke from the chimneys in your shot. With the long exposures at night you have free licence to get movement into your shots - be it clouds, water, stars, cars, whatever. I'd just recommend getting out there and experimenting. Longer exposures with clouds will produce some interesting effects and the reflections from light pollution can accentuate this.

Also, if there's nothing moving in your scene, just try bracketing and using a trial version of Photomatix Pro to try an exposure merge (or you can just use a single RAW file and convert several times at different exposures) - this will bring out more detail and micro contrast and help give images at night a little more pop.
I did shoot this one in JPEG, and I think auto WB was on... I will have to remember to switch to RAW.

I don't have a remote shutter release, and I don't believe I can use them on my D3100. I did use the timer so I wouldn't have any shake from my hands.

I did take a few shots of the street with cars moving, and got some neat looking shots. I'm going to try it on a busy street sometime.

I can't do bracketing with my D3100 either :mad:

Thanks for the comments!
 

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