Dark Skies

My friend’s blog, Cold Cat Studios – Icewind Photography, included a post about one of his photography passions, Night Photography.  For me, taking pictures at night or in low light is no easy feat.  It requires manipulation of many of the camera control in order for pictures to not turn out like this:

As I was sitting in my hotel room one night in Cairo, Egypt, I heard some loud noises.  I stepped outside on my balcony and realized that it was fireworks over the Nile River!  I quickly grabbed my camera and started snapping some shots.  I didn’t even think about manipulating the ISO to be higher and the result, I was unhappy with the series of shots that I got.  Sure, the picture has the actual fireworks in it, but you can’t even tell that there is water and nicely lit buildings underneath it.

Here is a shot of a bridge in Stanley Park (Vancouver) that we stopped to take a photo of.  I was in the passenger seat of the car and used the window sill as a tripod.  I just love the colors in this photo.

We drove all around Stanley Park as the skies grew darker.  I found yet another bridge where I was able to spend some time to play with exposure times (metadata included when you click on photo).  I was able to use a platform to act as a tripod, or else I’d probably get some very blurry pictures.

And lastly, for the Cold Cat Studios – Icewind Photography challenge, here is my favorite long exposure shot that I’ve taken of the Kansas City downtown skyline from the Liberty Memorial.  I also used a platform to act as a tripod for this picture.  The streak of orange lights on the streets are car tail lights as they drove past.  I also like how the street lights add a sparkling effect.

And in the spirit of sharing, please link back your favorite long exposure night photography picture you have taken or seen!


  1. Roxanna
    February 1, 2010 / 9:56 am

    Nice! Each one got progressively better…I’m sure you’re a pro by now! Can’t wait til you take my LV sign shots! Lol…

  2. Roanna
    February 1, 2010 / 10:46 am

    Wow, i Love the last picture 🙂

  3. Lang
    February 1, 2010 / 12:09 pm


    Hope this works

    The first one is from chicago, outside the museum of art. It took a while for me to get this, it’s hard to get the guy not moving and traffic moving in the background. I was initially going for him and headlights behind him, but that was too difficult. The next two are from the dam in argo park. I don’t remember any of the specs =(

    • February 1, 2010 / 12:38 pm

      @Lang Thanks for posting this Lang! I really dig the Chicago one, I think you did a really great job with keeping the guy steady and having the traffic rush past him. I really like the tone of this photo too! Great work!

  4. Dean
    February 1, 2010 / 5:55 pm

    I love night photos. I’m still learning how to use my newly bought DSLR, and when I get the chance, I’m going to take some too. Great pictures! I love the second photo.

  5. gina
    February 1, 2010 / 6:04 pm

    OMG, you are so good, Sandy! Love all the pictures!

  6. Lara
    February 1, 2010 / 6:21 pm

    Just beautiful!

  7. Sabrina V.
    February 1, 2010 / 9:47 pm

    Amazing pictures Sandy! I never knew you had such photography skills. I want an SLR too and want to take a class like you did. You are so inspiring. =)

  8. February 1, 2010 / 11:05 pm

    Beautifully done! There’s so much you can capture with patience and a camera with long exposure controls!! Keep it up!

  9. tin
    February 1, 2010 / 11:26 pm

    wow, your pictures are amazing sandy! you are getting so good with your photog skills! =)

  10. Janie
    February 2, 2010 / 8:20 am

    These pictures are so amazing! I love the colors!

  11. February 2, 2010 / 10:18 am

    Photochallenge 1A: Sandy. Light Graffiti. 😉

    I’d love to see your creativity.

  12. February 2, 2010 / 10:23 am

    As a side note, you can do extended exposures in daytime too, but it requires a Neutral Density filter to lower the light. I’ll upload some on my blog later. =)

  13. February 2, 2010 / 1:52 pm

    Such awesome photos! You’re so talented!!

  14. Sophie
    February 2, 2010 / 4:57 pm

    Ooo ahh perdy ..

  15. February 2, 2010 / 7:55 pm

    Very nice pictures… love the ones from the bridge… 😉

  16. Dustin
    February 3, 2010 / 9:15 pm

    I just can’t get enough of the pic of the KC skyline in the back and Union Station in the front! I love it so much I’m having it made as a decoration for my sister-in-law (who desperately misses KC but is currently living in NC). Keep up the great work – can’t wait to see where your pictures take you next!!

  17. Shen
    February 4, 2010 / 12:02 pm

    i really like your pix of Vancouver — so pretty =) and K.C!…brings back great memories!

  18. February 10, 2010 / 2:12 am

    Just found your site by accident (well actually from Chenin B’s blog) and I’m loving all your posts. You’re very creative, and that last night photo is awesome.

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