15 Tips for Low Light Landscape Photography

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    • Another key piece of kit is a remote control shutter release like Nikon’s ML-L3 wireless control which works with Nikon’s enthusiast range of cameras; D40, D40x, D60, D80 and D90. There are many varieties of release out there for all makes and models; some wireless others tethered. The benefit of a remote shutter release is the photographer can ensure they do not accidental nudge the camera during it’s exposure as this would show on the capture as shake or blur, distorting the overall crispness and clarity. Another trick to employ if you are without a remote shutter is to use the self timer.
    • If you do have a trigger release take this practice a step further by employing the camera’s bulb setting and mirror lock up functionality. First press the trigger to lock the mirror out of the way and wait for any residual vibrations to subside then press the trigger again to start the exposure but hold it down for as long as you want the capture to last.
    • Camera manufacturers are stepping up their game all the time pushing DSLR technology to the limits, most recently and perhaps notably is Nikon’s D3S which is capable of shooting at ISO 200 to an impressive 12,800. Further still this ISO can be expanded to an unprecedented 102,400. By utilising higher ISOs such as this photographers can sample low light photography hand held as the shutter speeds can be sufficiently increased.
    • Although powerhouses such as the D3S cope admirably with noise, the same cannot be said of all cameras. Therefore if you do opt for a High ISO instead or supporting the unit with a tripod noise is inevitably. However there are ways to reduce the effect. First your device may offer a Noise Reduction system, activate this and the camera will automatically search for the incorrect coloured pixels within your scene and map the correct the values instead. This isn’t the best idea by any means but is an option if handheld shooting is the only option available. There are many Noise reduction software products available on the market that can resolve this issue post capture as well and if processing in Photoshop opt to process as a 16-bit file rather than an 8-bit one as you’ll retain more image information which will extend the opportunity to recover shadows from burnt highlights and retrieve details from the shadows – both a hazard of low light shooting.
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