My photography instructor told me that shooting a photo at night is really no different than shooting a photo during the day. She’s right of course.
However, she also pointed out that subjects can take on a completely different feel at night.
An incredible scene during the day can be incredible in a whole new way at night. Something that appears to be simple during the day may take on a new complexity and mood at night.
Here I share a few ideas for finding interesting subjects to inspire you to practice night photography. Remember what you learned previously about light and color, and consider how they affect these subjects.
5 ideas for interesting subjects at night
Great lines, textures, interesting shadows, and color from a variety of light sources make buildings a great subject matter to experiment with night photography.
Bridges and water reflections
Bridges provide so many options. You can capture the whole bridge from a variety of angles to present a unique view people may not usually see. Or you can zoom in and capture details and patterns in the architectural design.
Maybe this is a personal preference, but I think that water reflections are much more powerful in night photography.
Capture a landscape to show a different perspective of an industrial spot without people. It could be a factory, an electrical station, a construction area. The metal and glass pick up light and can reflect color. There is also something about an empty industrial site at night that I find intriguing. These areas are also great for getting close-up detailed shots.
Around your home
Try to see your home in a new way. Grab your camera and tripod and wander around your neighborhood. Notice the way street lights create shadows, depth, and texture. Notice how the temperature of the light creates a different mood.
Something that just looks dirty or run-down in daylight can look beautiful and artistic under the cover of night.
(Who am I kidding? I find this graffiti-covered abandoned building beautiful and artistic during the day too.)