Moonlight Photography for Capturing Memorable Pictures

For a fresh approach, try these night digital photography techniques

by Simon Stafford

Old Church by Moonlight
© Simon Stafford
All Rights Reserved

Moonlight Photography Techniques

You can shoot anywhere between the first and third quarter moon phases. (Note: Here's a link for useful information about the moon and its cycles: )

The technique is quite simple. Some tips:

  • Set your camera to manual exposure mode.

  • Then select a shutter speed of 30 seconds at an aperture of f/4, with a sensitivity of ISO 800.

  • Avoid a longer exposure to prevent the stars appearing as trails of light rather than bright points.

  • Also, make sure there is no light pollution from nearby buildings, street lighting, etc.

  • The only other piece of essential equipment for this sort of picture is a sturdy tripod.
For this image, I used a 24mm lens and a Nikon D3x.

Take Your Photography to the Next Level in Online Photo Workshop!

Simon Stafford teaches a number of excellent online photo courses, including one on photographic composition.In addition, the BetterPhoto digital photography school offers many more classes on working with natural light and digital camera exposure.

About Author / Instructor / Photographer, Simon Stafford
Photography Instructor: Simon Stafford