Shooting Challenge: All of the Lights

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Cop lights, flash lights, spot lights, strobe lights, street lights: For this week's Shooting Challenge, photograph lights.


The Challenge

Take a photo with any manmade light source(s) as the centerpiece.

The Technique

So, you step out your door, aim your camera at some light, and things will end up anywhere from abysmal to OK. Or, you can check out this tutorial, which is a nice intro to photographing lights. They recommend slowing your shutter speed down, which will allow you to expose both the bright light and the dark scene around it properly. The other benefit is that light photographed over more time tends to have a softer glow.

For this, you'll want to lock down your camera on a tripod or place it onto a surface while photographing. They also note that manual focus may work better for you, since cameras always get confused in lowlight settings.

The Example

Our lead image, by Audrius Juralevicius, is a simple desk lamp. I love not only the strong subject of the glowing light itself, but the really natural looking grain that texturizes the shot.

The Rules

1. Submissions need to be your own.

2. Photos must be taken this week.

3. Explain, briefly, the equipment, settings, technique and story behind shot.

4. Email submissions to, not me.

5. Include 970px wide image (200KB or less) AND a 2560px wide image in email. I know that your photo may not fall into those exact high rez dimensions, so whatever native resolution you're using is fine.


6. One submission per person.

7. Use the proper SUBJECT line in your email (more info on that below)

8. You agree to the Standard Contest Rules - though we DO accept non-US resident submissions.


9. If the image contains any material or elements that are not owned by you and/or which are subject to the rights of third parties, and/or if any persons appear in the image, you are responsible for obtaining, prior to submission of the photograph, any and all releases and consents necessary to permit the exhibition and use of the image in the manner set forth in these rules without additional compensation. If any person appearing in any image is under the age of majority in their state/province/territory of residence the signature of a parent or legal guardian is required on each release.

Send your best photo by Monday, February 9th at 10 AM Eastern to with "Lights" in the subject line. Save your files as JPGs, and use a FirstnameLastnameLights.jpg (970px wide) and FirstnameLastnameLightsWallpaper.jpg (2560px wide) naming conventions.




All of the lights!