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Rising Moon

Photograph of Rising Moon

Photograph of Rising Moon

The moon rising over a calm ocean can be quite a sight, as I found out during my trip to the Andaman and Nicobar Islands.

(Submitted to the Daily Post’s Weekly Photo Challenge: ‘Serene‘)

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Motion Blur

In photography, most situations call for holding the camera as steady as possible. Under certain circumstances, however, this unwritten rule is broken. For example, in the above photograph, motion has been captured by moving the camera horizontally along the direction of motion of the motorcycle.

(Submitted to the Daily Post’s Weekly Photo Challenge: “Unusual“)

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Bokeh

Photograph of Bokeh

Photograph of Bokeh

Sometimes there is order in disorder and beauty in chaos. This photograph, which is intentionally out of focus, has a warm glow to it. Though there is nothing specific to “look at”, the entire photograph has an aesthetic and pleasing appearance. Unlike my other post with bokeh, this one has nothing in the foreground.

The term for aesthetic out-of-focus points in a photograph is bokeh. The bokeh depends greatly on the camera one uses. In this photograph the out-of-focus lights appear roundish, but, depending on the camera used, they may appear oval or even hexagonal in shape. Check out this site for more information on bokeh.

(Submitted to the Daily Post’s Weekly Photo Challenges: “Focus“, “Abstract“, “Circle” and “Careful“)

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Flowers in the Night

Photograph of flowers at night

Photograph of flowers at night

Night-time photography can be challenging at first, but when one has learnt the tricks of capturing a good photograph at night, the results can be very appealing and satisfying. The main difficulty that arises during night-time photography is obviously the lack of natural light available. Of course, light is essential for a photograph, so the lack of it causes some problems for the photographer. However there are some techniques that the photographer can use to overcome these problems and produce stunning images.

The first and most obvious method to overcome the paucity of light is to use the inbuilt camera flash. The main advantage of this method is that it produces very sharp and crisp images. However this method is not used often as the resulting images are very ‘flat’ and lacking in character. They do not give an accurate reflection of the scene.

Another method to overcome the problem is to use a slow shutter speed in combination with a large aperture. Using these settings allow more light to hit the sensor, and so a photograph can be produced. The problem with using a slow shutter speed is that the chances of camera shake increase drastically. Therefore, the camera must be kept extremely still, by means of a tripod or otherwise.

The third method to take photographs in low light is to increase the ISO value of the camera. Increasing this value means that the camera sensor will be more sensitive to light hitting it. This means that even a small amount of light can produce a relatively bright and clear image. However if the ISO rating is increased too much, the resultant photographs will be visibly grainy. This can ruin an otherwise appealing image.

The key is to figure out what kind of scene needs to be portrayed. Generally, using the camera flash is not a good option as it takes away from the feel of the image. The shutter speed, aperture and ISO rating must all be adjusted so as to achieve a perfect balance. The image should not be blurry or grainy, but at the same time the subject of the photograph should be clearly visible. There are very fine margins for error in low-light photography. Sometimes the best way to go is to experiment with various settings until the perfect shot is achieved.

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Lights in Plants

Picture of Small Light in Plants

Picture of Small Light in Plants

Nighttime photography opens up a whole new range of possibilities. Most nighttime photographs are simply impossible to recreate in the day, no matter how technologically advanced the equipment used is. Not only does nighttime photography require different equipment and camera settings, but it also produces photographs with a different “feel”.

This photograph was taken on Diwali, the Hindu festival of lights. During this festival families are supposed to decorate their homes with lights, candles, diyas (small earthen pots that are filled with oil and lit) and rangolis (colourful patterns made on the floor using petals, colours, etc). My family and I decided to put small, simple lights on the plants on the balcony, as diyas and candles would be difficult to sustain in the wind. The beautiful effect created by the lights had not been anticipated by any of us.