"If you are walking in Charleston, you are walking on someone's grave."--Sue Bennett, Charleston tour guide

Sunday, January 24, 2016

Nighttime Photography Tips

This semester we will have a few "flashlight tours" of nearby church graveyards. Because it will be dark, it's imperative that the camera flash be used. A few photos may need to be taken to ensure proper framing and focus.

Your camera or smart phone's photograph editing tools may also be necessary to brighten the image, adjust the contrast or make other processing corrections.

In this photo, taken at the Cathedral Church of St. Luke and St. Paul on Coming Street, I used my iPhone's brightening tool to improve the quality. This graveyard is actually lit pretty well due to a large street lamp on Coming Street.

Below is the same photograph before the brightening adjustment.

The purple stream is caused by the street light-- or maybe it's an apparition (i.e.ghost)!

For tips, checking out this tutorial, "How to Master Editing on Your iPhone."

Here is another link with good tips for planning, shooting and editing photos taken with iPhones and smart phones in general.

Below is another nightime before-and-after brightening example taken of a short obelisk at the St. Luke/St. Paul graveyard.

With a the iPhone brightening tool (called "light") in the edit settings, the background is better seen, including the cross behind the obelisk.

Cropping can also be done with any photo processing app. More creative changes can also be made with tilting or turning an image, or using settings such as noir, chrome, tonal and transfer.

Another tip is to get very close to the object your are photographing at night. The camera's built in flash, especially on phones, has only so much range.

 So get in there close to better ensure that as much details comes out as possible from the object being photographed.

After taking each photo, check the quality and go ahead and make some quick processing using the quick and easy built in editing tools all phones comes with today.

Wider shots can be more difficult in low light situations so make sure that flash is working.

Bringing and using a flashlight or lantern can help get extra light on an object. Work with a classmate to help light grave sites for each other.

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