Saturday, October 20, 2012

Long exposure pictures

In this small tutorial i would like to show you how to take long-exposure pictures like this with your iPhone. Its actually very simple, and even though you won't get a high-quality result, its still quite impressive. I have covered long exposure photos already for those of you who want to try out light painting right here!

You will need:
  • The app Magic Shutter (or any app that lets you take long exposure photos)
  • A tripod (trust me on this one, you will see why later on)
  • A high place where you can look down on a city

Soo thats it.
Get yourself a nice position and aim that camera down on the traffic. Start Magic Shutter and go to "light painting" mode. Now all you have to do is release the shutter and wait until some cars and other light sources.

But here's the problem with our small iPhone camera. At this point you will find out that if its already too dark, your iPhone's camera will suck up way too much light. In fact your streets will look like a giant line of cocaine (see picture below).

And if you don't own a tripod, I have some bad news for you. If you only have your hands to hold your iPhone steady, forget about it. I tried it, and even though I did my best I failed miserably and had to do the walk of shame to get my tripod.


Thats why we have to cheat a bit here (either that or you are able to get on a rooftop so high that the angle of the car's lights won't directly hit your camera). In my case i just took the picture when the sun was about to set. You will have to find the perfect balance between dark and bright later on. Afterwards, I simply used Snapseed to darken the picture and played around with contrast etc.

Unedited version

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