Blue Hill Holiday Journal { 5 } FRAMING IT JUST RIGHT (pt 2)

Blue Hill Holiday Journal { 5 } FRAMING IT JUST RIGHT (pt 2)

When Ira Lipkke photographs an event at Blue Hill at Stone Barns we know that each and every one of his intriguing images will be filled with timeless beauty.  With his help maybe we can finally get a great shot of the neighbor's holiday lights.

"Question : What do these images have in common, besides being taken at Blue Hill at Stone Barns? Answer : They were all taken at night in low light and intentionally UNDER exposed.

Since the sun sets early during Holiday times, we are often shooting in low light situations. One solution is to turn on your flash, but that totally changes the beautiful mood of candlelight and sparkling lights. When I want to preserve these romantic settings I do the following 3 things. (The following instructions are available on most cameras, even point & shoots, but might have different names depending on the camera model)

1. Open the aperture of the lens all the way up (set your camera to Av and dial in the smallest number possible)
2. Set my exposure to be 1 stop under exposed (set "exposure" to -1)
3. Hold the camera very steady and slowly press the trigger so that there isn't any camera shake.

By under-exposing the image it preserves the dark tones and allows our eyes to first see what is in the light and then move to all of the interesting details that are in the shadows. This lighting approach is what master painters have referred to as chiaroscuro."