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Tones of the Night...

 

As a novice photographer, I have always been anxious to try Night Photography; last year, I tried it for the first time and yielded decent results. This is my progression in the process!

 

 

The Basics

This picture was taken at Dundas Square right in front of the Eaton's Centre, I aimed to make this image my basis for progression; this was captured with the S9+ with Pro Mode set to auto. My usual edits were added to this image on Lightroom Mobile on the Tab S3.

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Light in Darkness

This image of the amazing Toronto Sign in Nathan Philips Square was taken around 7 PM in early January and I specifically chose to share this image because of its complexion! Bright lights at night are really hard to capture especially due to the harsh contrast between the night's darkness relative to the light source. From a technical standpoint, smartphone cameras have really small sensors that limit the amount of light into the sensor, this can create a lot of noise and generally an unpleasant photo. Some ways photographers use to combat or utilize this is by using the surrounding objects around the subject. The vibrancy of the Toronto Sign makes for incredible silhouettes! The people walking by have a soft glow and since Pro Mode is able to adjust the exposure manually, limiting that light creates a really sharp image! Reflections are best utilized at night due to that sharp light contrast, and here, the wet pavement as well as the frozen water along with the glow of the Toronto Sign not only helps elevate the photo but also adds another layer of complexity with the organic colour bleeding!

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Long Exposures!

 

By far my favourite trio of photos in this list, long exposure photos are a completely new game and these three were my best shots! A long exposure photo is when you slow down your shutter speed and your camera takes multiple images and stitches them together to create one final image. Now, long exposures were only possible through larger DSLR cameras with big sensors, but thanks to Pro Mode, it's now possible on your Phone!

 

 

This long exposure was taken on the street of Nathan Philips Square and yes, there are absolutely no cars... at least to the eye; Thanks to having a longer shutter speed, cars are quite literally a blur and having even just a 3-second exposure duration completely erased the cars that were driving by. After colour grading this image on Lightroom Mobile, I wanted to point out the detail in the road; since it was rainy that day, the cracks and seams of the road really pop and are sharp in focus! This is one of the great benefits of long exposure shots - they retain detail and clarity!IMG_3799-2.JPG

 

This photo was taken outside the Eaton Centre and I added a B&W filter on it to make the white lights really pop; using a longer shutter speed allowed me to expose all the tiny lights properly and I was able to retain all the details!

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My final image, and probably my favourite image by far, was taken inside The Bay Tunnel which connects the Hudson's Bay store to the rest of the Eaton's Centre. This tunnel is so packed all the time, it's almost impossible to take a good picture of it properly without all the people getting in the way. At night, the contrasting white beaming spirals create a futuristic look as it contrasts really well with the darkness of the night! I set the S9+ to take the longest exposure possible and this was the result. An incredible "portal" to light going to the other side. There were a lot of people, but because none of them stayed for more than a few seconds, the final image didn't capture much of them! The complexity of shapes, contours and light in relation to the night really made this one of my favourite images taken in the New Year!

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Overall, I really enjoyed this challenge as it took me out of my comfort zone and forced me to use elements to elevate a photo I normally wouldn't be able to take. Pro Mode on the S9+ is one of the most versatile and powerful photo software available straight out of the box and though I only scratched the surface of its capabilities, I can't wait to push more of the settings as soon as I discover them! 

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