How to take great images in low light


Photography is all about using light to paint a picture, and low light photography is no exception. In situations where light is limited, it can be a little trickier to capture a high-quality, sharp image – but don’t let this put you off! With the right know-how, you can capture stunning shots in any given low light situation. Try out these tips and get creative with your low light photography:


  • When shooting with slower shutter speeds, make sure you either have a sturdy tripod or are able to rest the camera on a solid surface. Hand shake will become obvious when the shutter is open for longer periods, resulting in a blurry image.
  • To obtain the sharpest possible image when using a tripod, use a remote trigger to release the shutter – and don’t forget to turn off the VR on the lens. Consider using the ‘MUP’ function, or in the latest generation of D-SLRs the ‘Electronic Front Shutter Curtain’ feature on the camera, to minimise any possible movement. This will prevent the vibration that occurs when the mirror moves up and down, which can cause the image to have a slight blur.
  • In order to make interesting abstract images, try shooting lights at low aperture values such as F1.4 and F2.8, or use manual focus to ‘defocus’ the image slightly to create Bokeh and different creative images.
  • Try using ISO auto mode – this is found in the shooting menu, and will allow the camera to decide the best ISO setting for the situation. You can also limit the maximum ISO that the camera chooses, reducing the risk of noise in the image.
  • Always carry a torch! You never know when you will need it for setting up a tripod or changing lenses in the dark. Spare batteries an extra SD card should also be in your kitbag – particularly if you’re shooting in RAW.