I shall venture into the night

I have an upcoming shooting assignment in one of my photographers’ groups that I find both exciting and daunting: “Night.” (But then, I find most of my photo assignments exciting and daunting.)

Cozumel fire show.

Cozumel fire show

Although I have boxes of prints and scads of photo files taken over many years, very few were taken at night. None good. At all.

When I did take photos at night with my point and shoot camera, I usually was somewhere after dark, and I wanted to record the event.

Like watching a fire show in Cozumel, Mexico.

Lunar eclipse

Lunar eclipse

Only once did I decide to take photos at night just for the sake of taking photos at night, and that was during a lunar eclipse when so many people were showing off their great moon shots. Mine weren’t so great, even though I had learned by then not to hold the camera by hand and to use a slow shutter speed.

If I wanted to take better night photos I needed to learn how. And practice. So although I was apprehensive when the instructor in my fall non-credit photo course gave us a night photo assignment, I was also determined to get some decent night photos. By then, I had a DSLR and had found my old tripod from when I was learning to take film photos years ago. And I’d learned about the interplay between aperture, shutter speed, and ISO. So what could stand in my way? Quite a few things it turns out.

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