Ditch the Flash: How To Take Great Halloween Photos in Low Light

Image: Pictures By Mom

Can you believe Halloween is next week? With all its colorful costumes and spine-tingling decorations, you’ll want to have your camera ready!

But there’s a catch. Due to the holiday’s spooky nature, most of the festivities take place in the evening. (Low light alert!) Sure, you could always use flash. But then you’ll lose the full effect of the creepy shadows cast by the setting sun and the eerie light from street lamps.

So how can you ditch the flash and still capture All Hallows Eve? We’ve got you covered with these tips on how to take great Halloween photos in low light!

1. Keep those elbows in to avoid camera shake. Your camera is going to take a little longer to take photos when there isn’t as much light to work with. Keep it steady through the whole process by drawing your elbows into your sides (think the opposite of the funky chicken). Or, better yet, rest your camera on a sturdy object before you snap the photo.

Image: Leah Schmalz

Experimenting with night mode on your camera can yield chilling effects. (Image: Leah Schmalz)

2. Play with your settings. If you’re using a camera with adjustable settings, take your f-stop down as low as possible and drop your shutter speed to at least 50 (feel free to go lower if you can keep the camera steady). Set your ISO between 650 and 1,000, though be advised: the higher you go, the more grain your photos will have.

If you’re using your phone, bump the exposure up to +2. Some phones also have an ISO option, which you can raise just like you would on a camera. A lot of phones and cameras also have a setting called “night mode.” Try experimenting with it – you never know what great effects you might get!

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Image: Leah Schmalz

3. Take advantage of available light. Whether it’s a street lamp, string lights, or the candle glow from a Jack-o’-lantern, you’ll need some type of light for your photos. To take the terror up a notch, grab some flashlights. Have the kids hold the light at their chests so that it shines up into their ghoulish faces. Yikes!

Once you’ve got your those shots mastered, don’t forget to order them as prints for a Halloween photo album or scrapbook using the Kicksend app! (http://kicksend.com/print-photos)

Featured Image: Pictures By Mom

Leah is a freelance writer, photo junkie, and avid traveler. When she's not chipping away at a story, you can find her exploring the outdoors or planning her next adventure. Read about them on her blog, Relentless Adventure.

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