Photography is all about finding the light and here in Essaouira it’s usually in abundance but on a photographic holiday you want to explore the range of photographic opportunities. Night time photography offers something completely different when street lighting is the only source of illumination. Both Jackie and Ciaran were keen in the last week of September to take some photos of Essaouira’s atmospheric backstreets and alleys. The old fortifications combined with the night time sea air are suggestive of a town unchanging and of course this is part of Essaouira’s charm. The main challenge of night time imagery is firstly to be able to see what one is doing so at the very least always take a small penlight with you. Most DSLRs have an illuminated LCD screen but that can be tricky to see when your camera is positioned at head height so a torch will help you see the camera’s screen at the back. Of course you’ll also be using a tripod and this helps both steady the camera for slow shutter speeds and also slows down your working processes which can help you think about better compositions.
Many photographers always work with a tripod. It’s a much more Zen way of working. Whilst a tripod steadies the camera you’ll also need to use your self timer setting which also helps to eradicate image blurring as your finger is not engaged in pressing the button which can transmit vibrations. Secondly you may also have the option of mirror lock-up which can further prevent camera shake. In terms of exposure, cameras are set to give you an average reading so a dark subject will appear slightly lighter and a bright subject vice versa. To get naturalism and often the desired moodiness at night time, under-expose by a stop or so to see the shadows fall nicely into shade. Jackie and Ciaran came at for a photography holiday in the last week of September flying with Easyjet. Their galleries can be seen here.