We all know them, those times of the day when we see little because the sun has moved on. Some people call that night. That is where many photographers pack up and go to sleep, have a party or just clean their gear. For me this is a time to go outside and see what I can get.
Photography in the evening and in the night can be a bit challenging. First, you will be walking around in places where most people have left. And you walk there with some expensive gear and a very visible tripod.
Depending on the places you are visiting, you may want to reconsider and lose the tripod for a while. Or just leave and shoot somewhere else . Others will like the “risk” and will shoot with a smaller camera instead.
Esplanade Riel, Winnipeg, Manitoba
Personally, I only have one camera suitable for low-light photography so I don’t have that choice. Perhaps that’s why I prefer to do landscape photography. The above fireworks shot was planned for much later, but the Goldeyes made pulp out of their opponents and the fireworks went off by light to celebrate. I had to darken the picture to make the fireworks visible.
The Forks, Winnipeg, Manitoba
I have blogged about night photography before, the best time of the year for me to do that is when the night is longer than the day. But not always is that the best time to get certain shots. Fireworks will not always be shot in winter, in winter you have no flowing water and more reasons like that. The above shot of The Forks was taken during late evening hours, the sunlight still clinging to the horizon, with water flowing as you’d expect water to do.
So, sometimes I go out during the summer months and shoot the night (breeze). Or the summer fair in Brandon. That night I didn’t have a tripod with me so I was desperately looking for a stable place. If I remember well, the above picture was taken from the vantage point of a garbage can…
Leeuwarden, The Netherlands
And then you get to places where you used to roam the streets at night for years on end. Leeuwarden, in the north of The Netherlands has many places and views to photograph. What do you expect from a 900 year old city? Well, lots of nice places to shoot, of course. The bridge you see (the paved part) was built in the 1500s or thereabouts. Many of the houses you see are from the 17th century. Still standing and used. The picture taken by pressing the camera to a wall and hoping it wouldn’t move during exposure.
Leeuwarden, The Netherlands
Canals, full of ships still hold the water they were supposed to hold hundreds of years ago. Now they are used for pleasance ships, back in the days they were part of a serious defense system around the city. The shot was taken from a bridge, stable enough to keep the camera still for a few seconds.
Going to Ukraine, in less troubled times than today, shots from high up over the city of Kiev. The light fog over the city was a real extra for the picture. Again, this picture was taken without a tripod, but with the help of a railing on the balcony of the apartment. Stable enough, but I had my doubts about letting go of the camera for the duration of the exposure .
Lenin in the mist, Konotop, Ukraine
Going to the north of Ukraine, in a city called Konotop, Lenin was a stern figure. The statue has now been demolished by the “uproaring” nationalists and / or their opponents. The current situation in Ukraine is too mixed up to make any valid comments now. What a shame! The picture, however, was taken with a Coolpix Point and Shoot, without tripod. If you look carefully, the flowers are all doubled. Still, not bad for a handheld picture (plus a few vodkas).
Rockefeller Plaza, NYC
Then, as in the lead picture of this post, a nightly walk through the great city of New York. Rockefeller Plaza is as majestic by night as it is by day. By night, however, you have the chance to get the light play on the building as well. Lens flare was optional but this time came with the package . Probably thanks to the lamppost against which I was pressing the camera for stability.
Red River Ex
Back to Winnipeg with some fireworks. The Red River Exhibition is a nice training ground for the upcoming fireworks of Canada Day, two to three weeks later. As you may suspect, the above shot was a dud and nearly set the whole fireworks site on fire. It definitely cancelled the final bouquet of the show. The tripod, stationed in Winnipeg as you now understand, came in handy.
There you have it. All kinds of night shots and not one of them with snow or ice. Sometimes you just have to get out in the dark to get the shot.
Until next time…