Creating Captivating Images with Long-Exposure Photography

Long-Exposure Photography | B&H eXplora

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Long-Exposure Photography

Long-Exposure photography involves leaving the shutter of your camera open for an extended period of time, allowing the light to hit the sensor uninterrupted. This type of photography enables you to create amazing, surrealistic shots that can showcase motion and capture time. With the right settings, you can also create moody landscape images with beautiful light trails.

What Kind of Camera do You Need?

You don’t need to have an expensive camera to achieve beautiful long-exposure shots. All you need is a camera with a manual mode and the ability to keep the shutter open for an extended period of time. Most digital SLRs and mirrorless cameras have the ability to do this. You’ll also need a sturdy tripod to minimize movement while your shutter is open.

What Settings Do You Need?

The settings depend on the type of shot you’re trying to create. Generally, a long-exposure shot will require an aperture of 8 or 11, a shutter speed of more than a few seconds, and a low ISO setting. Experiment with varying shutter speeds and aperture settings to get the look you’re going for.

Tips for Long-Exposure Photography

Long-exposure photography can lead to some stunning results, but it’s important to be mindful of some tips when taking these types of shots:

  • Use a remote trigger: If you’re taking a long-exposure shot, you want as little movement of the camera as possible to avoid blurring the shot. To minimize movement, you should use a remote trigger.
  • Set the white balance: Setting the white balance correctly is important for any type of shot. For long-exposure photography, it’s particularly important as you’ll be dealing with light over a longer period of time.
  • Bring a flashlight: If you’re shooting at night, you’ll need to bring a flashlight or headlamp for setting up equipment and seeing the settings on your camera.


Long-exposure photography is a great way to create surrealistic images, capture motion, and tell a story. It can be daunting to try your first long-exposure shot, but with the right settings and some practice you’ll soon be taking amazing photos!

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