Low Light Photography

My newest personal goal is learning how to improve my low light photography skills, when flash is not an option. Although I can certainly edit the pictures later to lighten things up, often that does not result in the natural scene that my eyes see when the shot was taken. If I do not make changes in the automatic settings, the final results are usually too dark. I’m looking for that happy medium.

Sony DSC F828
I am working with the Sony DSC F828 (8.0 MP) which includes the Carl Zeiss T* lens. It is a beautiful camera to work with as it allows me to use automatic settings when I am just taking family snapshots, while still allowing me full control of the settings as needed.

So far this personal learning challenge has been a matter of trial an error, literally taking hundreds of pictures while experimenting with every possible setting. Thank goodness I am working with digital!

The photo below was especially frustrating, as the natural lighting varied so much in a single scene, with the area behind the trees actually being much lighter than where the horse was standing.

Outdoor Low Light Photography Challenge With Water

(click thumbnail to view full image)

Pictures taken in the evening, especially when the sky is gray, continue to cause a similar challenge. In order to keep the sky from washing out in the photograph, I again ended up with a fairly dark image.

Outdoor Low Light Photography Challenge With Gray Sky

(click thumbnail to view full image)

My plan is to begin experimenting with a few lens filters to see if this might be a possible solution. Although I certainly want to keep my photos as natural as possible, I also do not want to have to wait for the weather to give me those picture perfect lighting days either.

J. Cricket Walker

Small Business Marketing Consultant and Scenic Photographer
Copyright © 2006 J. Cricket Walker of Online Photography Magazine All Rights Reserved

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