Halloween Photography: Shooting in Low Light

Taking Halloween photographs is a great way to celebrate this exciting festival, but you may have some problems due to the lack of light around some areas. If you don't have a good lighting system, then you may need to try other things in an attempt to avoid taking photographs which are too dark. You could apply special tricks to create illumination on faces, or you may use camera accessories to get a good shot of the surrounding area.

Using Your Surroundings

Halloween is particularly dedicated to ghosts and the supernatural, and you may find that you can light your photographs better through the use of illuminations. String cable lighting from the edges of doors and windows to give a spooky glow and to provide illumination to faces and costume details. When shooting using these lights, it is best if your camera faces away from them, and the costume you are photographing is fully lit. This will prevent light flare from detracting from your photograph, while giving you the best possible focus upon the costume.

You may get lucky and come across costumes which have been painted with glow in the dark paint. If you have the person or child stand in a brightly lit area for a minute or so, you will then be able to take them away from this light source, and yet still have a distinct illumination. In fact, photographs taken of glow-in-the-dark costumes can be spooky in themselves.

Using Camera Accessories

One of the most common camera accessories is the flash. This device illuminates the area of the photograph, but it can sometimes be too bright, causing faces to appear ghostly and causing eyes red (although this may be the effect you want for your photograph; it is Halloween after all). In order to avoid this, you can defuse the flash using an old pair of tights, which are simply fitted over the top of the flash compartment. If you don't have any spare tights, then you can use similar muslin or semi-translucent materials to prevent the flash from illuminating the area too brightly.

As well as using a flash, you could also try changing the settings on the camera to allow more light to enter the camera. Slowing the shutter speed is one way of doing this, although you may find that children find it difficult to stay still and may blur your picture. You may also try widening the aperture through which light reaches the inside of the lens, so that more light is allowed in. Extra light flowing into the lens area, plus slowing the shutter speed, can give you an extra allowance of light, which will mean that you can take effective shots without having to worry about using a flash.

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