How to Best Photograph Christmas Lights

In this basic tutorial video, photographer Jay P. Morgan (from the Slanted Lens) takes a look at shooting a house decorated with Christmas lights and discusses the best time and way to shoot it.

In the holiday spirit this quick video tutorial takes us through some of the things we need to know if we are planing on shooting any house with Christmas lights.

Here are some useful points:

  • Time – choose the right time, typically during sunset just before the skies turn dark should be the best time (but keep in mind that you might only have 10-15 minutes so make sure you will get this right.
  • Shoot in RAW – this will allow you to post process your images (recovering shadows is going to help a lot in this case).
  • Shoot with a tripod – shooting hand held at slow shutter speeds isn’t a good idea.
  • Don’t use your built in flash – shoot on manual (on a tripod) and correct your exposure until you get it just right.
  • White balance – Use daylight or tungsten – either way if you shoot RAW you can change the look afterwards,

As for camera settings – Morgan used Aperture – f/5.6, shutter 1/15 second and ISO of 800 (although we would rather have it lower with slower shutter speed).

You can find all of Jay P. Morgan’s videos here on LensVid on the following link. As always you can find more helpful photography tips on our Photography tips section here on LensVid.