Night Photography: Beginner’s Guide

||Night Photography: Beginner’s Guide

Night Photography: Beginner’s Guide


  • Any Camera that has manual setting DSLR suggested (anything that has the BULB or M option ) – (Canon, Nikon, Sony)
  • Tripod (TIP: A shoe or rock also makes a good tripod, or even use your wallet)
  • Wide angle lens (TIP: between 10mm – 50mm )
  • Remote (TIP: these are optional, branded or third party)


  • Check weather (TIP: Apps/news reports/ local paper)
  • Follow the moon phase rise and set time (TIP: google this)
  • Star Walk app (TIP: This app helps with understanding the sky)
  • Clean your gear (TIP: lens and LCD glass for best results)
  • Prep/set camera settings before heading out (i.e: house/tent/van/car)
  • Dim your screen brightness to minimum (TIP: For the best LCD preview)
  • Set your camera to RAW quality (important)


  • Face South (Best results) (TIP: Find the Southern cross)
  • Use a bag or something heaving to weight down your tripod (TIP: Some Tripods have hooks on the middle pole)
  • Be confident your tripod is sturdy (TIP: a shorter tripod is stronger then a tall)
  • Take trail images (TIP: don’t commit to the first image you see, keep shooting, making small adjustments)
  • Minimise the use of white lights (TIP: A night light or red light / covering a torch with RED cellophane
  • Be patient (TIP: play music from your phone, bring a friend to chat to or feast your eyes on the sky)
  • Keep in mind other photographers may be out shooting as well and may be hard to see them, be mindful for of their shots and not to effect them (shining lights/getting in frame)
  • Make sure your camera is set to RAW quality


  • RAW image quality
  • Manual focus (TIP: 10x zoom on the brightest star in the LCD “Live” preview mode or Pull focus to Infinite, then pull “a hair “ back)
  • 2 sec timer – 10 sec timer (TIP: This will stop the camera shake during your exposure)
  • Shutter Speed 20 sec – 30 sec (20” – 30”)
  • ISO 2000 – 3200 (TIP: Adjust the iOS before anything other settings, gain is sometimes welcomed)
  • Aperture or F/stop down to either 2.8 / 3.5 (TIP: lower number = better)
  • Insure the “live view” mode is ON (TIP: live view set the mirror to the UP position minimising the “shake” when the timer goes off)


  • Most night time photography comes to life in post editing
  • Lightroom – Photoshop suggested apps
  • Adjust the colour temp / exposure / highlights / shadows / whites / blacks  (TIP: small adjustments always look better)


  • Including a subject or foreground into night photography sometime requires bringing multiple images together in photoshop (REASONS: Milky Way isn’t in the correct position, foreground requires less light (exposure time, Shutter speed). Be sure to capture multiple images e.g. foreground/subject, then point your camera towards the Milky Way (SOUTH).
  • Try light painting your subject, actively light your subject with a torch or flash during the exposure time (TIP: if you wear black clothes you can run around in the image light paint and you will not be seen in the shot, try and not shine your torch towards the camera, even standing In between the camera and torch will protect your image.

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By | 2018-08-15T06:54:59+00:00 August 15th, 2018|Uncategorized|Comments Off on Night Photography: Beginner’s Guide

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