Last Updated: February 16, 2017
Lighting is the key to great, consistent photography. Insufficient lighting or the wrongflash settings can sabotage an otherwise fantastic photo. Whether you’re indoors, out at night or at the beach, it’s the lighting that makes the photograph. Here are some basic lighting tips from Costco Photo Centre to make sure you get the best out of your photos.
Natural light can be your best friend when taking indoor photos. Natural light can produce impressive results with soft gentle highlights and contrasting shadows, while avoiding the harsh lighting and red-eye from a flash.
Some basic guidelines: don’t stand in front of the light source, don’t shoot a backlit subject without a flash and always try to take indoor photos close to windows or skylights. Well-lit photos look fantastic printed on archival paper from 4x6 to 24x36, on canvas, and especially as Framed Prints, which help to bring out the colours and textures.
The gift of outdoor lighting is opportunity. Try not to plan for a certain kind or quality of light when venturing outside to take photos as the light can change in an instant. Instead, embrace the changes and shifting patterns of natural light. Look for opportunities to capture something unique when the light shifts.
The best quality of outdoor light is early morning or that soft, golden glow of the evening. Mid-day lighting will give you bright, colourful and high-contrast pictures. Use dark backgrounds for anything that is well-lit and use a light background for anything you want to highlight. Outdoor shots come to life on Canvas Prints. For depth and perspective, try a Multi-Panel Canvas Print to spread that beautiful panorama over multiple canvas prints.
Photography at Night
Don’t use your flash for night time photography. What you’ll need is a larger aperture to let in as much light as the camera can possibly record. Dusk lighting is ideal for distance photos, so wait for that moment just after the sun has set if you’re looking to capture a night time landscape.
Never forget to check your shutter speed. The longer a shutter stays open, the more light gets in and the more detail you capture in your photo. Just be sure to have a steady hand or use a monopod or tripod. As long as you have an effective exposure time and allow as much light as possible to be recorded, your nighttime photos will be beautiful. Night photos will look stunning as a 16x20 Poster Print or as a Framed Print.
Street photos are a really cool, niche form of art, but they aren’t as simple as one might think. Lighting can be a bit tricky when it’s filtering in between buildings and casting shadows. Don’t be afraid to set your camera at an angle to compensate for shadow angles and do your best to avoid shooting directly into the sun.
Watch out for window-glare when taking photos of the city and be aware of what's going on in the background. Remember, every photo is a story. For a series of street shots, try compiling a custom Photo Book for each city you photograph.
Check out Costco Photo Centre's multiple Photo Book styles in hardcover or elegant leather, and choose your best photo for the front.