When the sun goes down it seems that my camera does too. Night photography is a challenge. How do I capture the lights without lighting up the frame and making it look like daytime? So I’ve been practicing. And what better place to practice than in Chicago, a city that lights up the night–at least during the summer. There is something beautiful about the way that lights reflect on water at night. Here’s a view of the city from Navy Pier. And what a treat to be in a city that offers fireworks twice each week during the summer. And what better place to try my hand at some night photography (or fireworks photography)…definitely not easy to get a good shot! I live in a place where the sun sets in the evening over the water, making it easy to know where west is located. And I found myself wanted to look out over Lake Michigan to watch the sun set here in Chicago too. But that isn’t where west is…so I had to follow the sun. And as luck would have it, we happened into the Signature Lounge of the John Hancock building just after the sun had set but was still in all its colorful glory lighting up the sky. And even better, we were seated right at the west-looking windows on the 96th floor to enjoy our pricey cocktails (that were well worth the cost for the view alone!). As I noticed the Sears Tower (AKA Willis Tower), I also saw that the sunset was reflected in the windows in my image. The app Painteresque helped me make that reflection even more beautiful. Last night I was back down at Millennium Park, along with thousands and thousands of other people (I heard the number 20,000 thrown out) to try to catch a glimpse of the taping of the NPR show, Wait Wait Don’t Tell Me. And after watching for a while and then stopping for some dinner, we returned to the park for a nighttime view. Looking into My Dreams, Awilda lights up the night, her glow offering a sense of serenity as you enter the park. And over her shoulder last night, the blue moon came into view. I wanted to capture the softness and glow…so used Waterlogue to soften the edges and create my own version of art from this sculpture.
So explore the night. You might try your hand at capturing the lights of night against the dark sky…or maybe for you night will be an image that expresses what happens indoors once the sun goes down. You can post your photo alone or along with some words: commentary, a story, a poem…maybe even a song! I love to study the photographs that others’ take and think about how I can use a technique, an angle, or their inspiration to try something new in my own photography. (I love a great mentor text…or mentor photo, in this case!) I share my photography and writing on social media. You can find me on Instagram and Twitter using @kd0602. If you share your photos and writing on social media too, please let me know so I can follow and see what you are doing. To help our Weekly Photo community find each other, use the hashtag #night for this week and include @nwpianthology in your post.
As we head out of July into August, what does night look like where you are? Look indoors or outdoors, at nature, at your place, in your home…capture an image of night for us all to see! I’m looking forward to seeing night through your lens!