Long Exposure : Demystified

Time and again, I have had requests and queries on how to take the amazing “trails” photos, today, I shall try to demystify them.

Long Exposure, Trails, Diwali Night, Marine Drive
The technique is called Long Exposure. As the name suggests, we make the photo’s exposure long. In doing so, any light source, or lit up object, that is incident on the sensor, shall be registered by it. In technical terms, we extend the time the shutter stays open, by decreasing the shutter speed. This causes the exposure to be “long”.

Here’s an example:

Long Exposure, Queens Necklace, Marine Drive, Mumbai

Now, to achieve this, we need to have a shutter speed that is low enough to form the light trails, while the aperture has to be such that the photo does not wash out, all the while maintaining the ISO at a level where there is not a lot of noise.
We can get to this unique combination by fiddling in the Manual mode:

Nikon D7200, Manual Mode setting

Or, by setting the camera in the Aperture Priority mode (AV mode in Canon).

Nikon D7200, Aperture Priority Mode setting

The objective should be to have an optimal exposure, despite the slow shutter speed.

Nikon D7200, Aperture Priority Mode setting

With enough practice, taking stunning photos shall not be difficult at all.
Long Exposure is amazing for smoothening out ripples in water, or giving the water a milky flowy look. Do try them out.

Long Exposure, Smootheing of Lake, Bangla Sahib, New Delhi

Slowing down water flow, Elephant Falls, Meghalaya

It is also useful to take photos in low light environments such as this dimly lit monument at the Lodhi Gardens, New Delhi.

Long Exposure, Lodhi Gardens, New Delhi

I shall conclude by stating that unless you practice, you shall not be perfect. Go out there, and explore the amazing world of long exposure.

Cheers!!

TTL: Cherrapunji (Sohra)

From Shillong city, we went to the Shillong viewpoint, which is located within the Air Force Base. The route was dense with fog, and the visibility was rather limited. From the view point, only a few pine trees and their cones were visible.

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As we came to lower altitude, the weather cleared and we got an amazing view of green fields, dark mountains and blue sky specked with clouds.

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Before turning towards Elephant Falls, our driver, made one last detour. This time, into a pine forest.

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Next stop, was the Elephant falls. I ll be honest, this was just the way I had thought it would be, and was prepared. I had lugged my tripod, for just this kind of a shot, and I got it.

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There are 3 stages of this falls, rest two were pretty, but this one, the stage 1, was the best, by me!

Next, we turned towards the once wettest place on earth, Cherrapunji or as locally known as, Sohra.

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The route is nothing short of majestic and in every turn, you feel like stopping for a shot.

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At Cherrapunji, we met up with more dense fog and by the time we went to the tallest plunge waterfall of India, the Nokalikhai Falls, the cliff was blanketed in fog, and nothing, absolutely nothing was visible. We turned back, a little disappointed that we missed the view.

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But then, we were excited too. We were off to Kaziranga the next day! Rhinos…coming up shortly 🙂

Cheers!!

Slow!

For the love  of smooth milky waterfalls!

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Shot at Elephant Falls in Shillong, Meghalaya. A lot more to come soon!
Cheers!!