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Low Light Photography

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Join 's Course: Low Light PhotographyLearn to handle all kinds of photographic situations in low light circumstances. Understand exposure, noise suppression, critical focusing, and many other challenges associated with shooting in muted light. Low light photography is definitely problematic, but it also presents creative potential if you can think outside the box. Popular instructor and top pro Jim Zuckerman offers unique and artistic solutions to shooting when you may think there isnít enough light for good picture taking.

Key Features

  1. Tools of Low Light Photography
  2. Low Light Exposure Techniques
  3. Low-Light Exposures, Part 2
  4. Low Light Challenges; Low Light Solutions
  5. Special Effects in Low Light
  6. Digital tools for Low Light Photography
  7. HDR (High Dynamic Range)
  8. Technical Challenges

  • For upper-level hobbyists, intermediates, and advanced
  • Low light exposure techniques.
  • Macro photography in muted light.
  • Shooting in an aquarium.
  • Photographing indoor sports.
  • Capturing fireworks.
  • Landscapes in the dark.
  • Painting with light.
  • Stacking images to eliminate noise.
  • And much more!

$396.00 USD

What You Get


You get direct feedback on your photos from world-acclaimed, professional photographers. You can learn photography in this way from anywhere in the world.  
  • Learn at your pace, with structure.
  • Be guided by a real pro instructor.
  • Get your photos critiqued every week.
  • Join students from around the world.
  • Go far beyond any book or DVD.
  • Make great pictures, again and again!



Photography Instructor: Jim  Zuckerman Jim Zuckerman
Few people are able to spend most of their time pursuing their passion in life. I'm one of them, and I feel blessed to have had a love affair with photography since I began taking pictures.

In 1970, I decided to abort my intended career as a doctor in favor of photography and have never regretted it. Photography has enriched my life more than I can tell you. My career has taken me to over 60 countries, and I've seen and photographed wondrous things.

I specialize in wildlife and nature, international travel, and digital effects. In addition, I also shoot nudes, photo- and electron microscopy, children, and other subjects that stimulate my visual or emotional sensibilities.

For 25 years, I shot a medium format camera, specifically the Mamiya RZ 67, for its superior quality. When I would lecture, Iíd project the large, glass mounted transparencies, and it was really an incredible experience to see the brilliant color saturation and resolution of these slides. However, I went digital in 2004 because the technology finally equaled or surpassed medium format. I now shoot the Canon 1Ds Mark II digital camera with a variety of lenses.

I am the author of 12 books on photography. My work is sold in 30 countries around the world, and my images have appeared on scores of magazine and book covers, calendars, posters, national ads, trade ads, brochures, and corporate promotions.

For many years I've led photography tours to exotic places. These include Papua New Guinea, Thailand, Burma, Greece, The Czech Republic and Slovakia, Spain, Morocco, and Peru.

Sample Photos by the Instructor

© Jim Zuckerman 

© Jim Zuckerman 

Examples of Student Photos


View photos by previous students. You can make pictures like this too!

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Course Outline


1. Tools of Low Light Photography
Low light photography requires technical discipline to get the kind of pictures you want. Obviously artistry is also part of the equation, but shooting when the light is reduced presents technical problems that can only be dealt with using technical solutions. Topics include tripods, ball heads, electronic flash, flashlight, image stabilization, etc.  
2. Low light Exposure Techniques
The problem with using exposure meters in low light environments is that they were not designed for this. This lesson covers metering approaches for low light. Among the topics: spot metering, the LCD monitor, understanding the limits.

3. Low-Light Exposures, Part 2
Unlike our brain, light can accumulate on a digital sensor over a long period of time. This makes it possible to show very dim subjects in light that makes them appear as if they were illuminated with a bright light source. In this lesson, you'll learn the issues involved in taking long exposures and the best ways to deal with the technical challenges you face. Also covered: noise suppression. 

4. Low Light Challenges; Low Light Solutions
We photographers are constantly challenged with shooting in circumstances where the light is not sufficient to get what we really want, which are sharp pictures, extensive depth of field, minimal noise, and a good exposure. We often have to choose between these factors. This lesson describes the thinking process in dealing with tough subjects in a variety of circumstance, such as shooting in an aquarium, macro photography in muted light, and traffic at night.

5. Special Effects in Low Light
An artist with a paintbrush applies color to a canvas, and a photographer with a light source can apply light and color to a digital image.  The tools are different but the idea is the same.  A lot can happen to a photograph when the shutter of the camera is open for a lengthy period of time. Among the topics: painting with light, creating a star field, stacking images to eliminate noise, circles of confusion (out-of-focus light sources),  

6. Digital tools for Low Light Photography
Digital cameras allow photographers to stretch the boundaries of what we can capture like never before. However, there is a price to be paid, and that price is image quality.  You just can't expect a picture taken at 25,000 ISO to be as sharp and to show fine detail with tack sharp clarity like a picture taken at 200 ISO. There are limits to what advanced technology can deliver. This lesson involves techniques in post-processing that allow you to push the technology to the limit, and compared to what we could do just a few years ago, it is truly unbelievable.

7. HDR (High Dynamic Range)
Much has been written about the technique of high dynamic range, and if you are very familiar with it and use it all the time, then this will be old news to you.  There are different approaches, though, and even if you do know how it works and understand the advantages, some of this information may shed new light on the technique for you. Yes, you can go overboard with HDR and produce a wild interpretation of the original scene, but it can also be used to simply produce images with all the detail that's there. Don't let HDR intimidate you. It's not difficult at all, and the results are definitely worth the small learning curve required to do it well.

8. Technical Challenges
This course wrap-up jumps into a variety of topics, including: Focusing techniques in the dark. Using the bulb function. Camera vibration versus long exposures. Methods of triggering the camera without vibration. Flashlight use. Light pollution.

© Jim Zuckerman 

© Jim Zuckerman 



  • Digital camera
  • Knowledge of - and the ability to control - aperture, ISO and shutter speed.
  • Tripod
  • Flash



Who is the course intended for?
It is intended for all photographers, because everyone has to shoot in low light circumstances more times than we'd like.  Low light photography is challenging, and therefore it's important to know how to handle these situations well. 

What kind of equipment will I need to complete the photo assignments? 
You can use any kind of digital camera in which you can control the f/stops and shutter speeds.  You will also need a tripod and a flash.  A portable flash that you can take off-camera is ideal but not necessary for this course. 

Can we use digital editing software like Photoshop or Elements to alter our photos?

Do you hire an assistant to help you write the critiques, or do you do them all yourself?
Jim is the only one who writes the critiques. You are getting 40 years of experience in the feedback you receive each week.   

What if I'm late for an assignment?  Will Jim still critique my work?
Yes, absolutely.  The beauty of online courses is that they can fit into any schedule.  This isn't high school.  This course is for you, and if you're late - even if you submit images after the course is officially over - Jim will still critique your work. 

© Jim Zuckerman 

© Jim Zuckerman 

Do I have to be online at any specific time?
No, you do not need to be online at any specific time. The lessons are sent to your email and you are also provided the Campus Square - where you interact with your classmates and instructor. This is also where you upload your photos to be critiqued by your instructor. The instructors are very punctual and respond quickly.

Will I have access to the instructor to ask questions during the photo course?
Absolutely! Students can ask questions in the special Q&A forum set up in the course's Campus Square, or can ask the instructor via email.

Do you offer a money back guarantee?
Yes. We are confident that you will fully enjoy our courses. All the same, for our 8-week classes, we offer a 100% money-back guarantee before the Wednesday that Lesson #3 is sent out. If for any reason, you are not satisfied and let us know that you would like to withdraw before the Wednesday that Lesson #3 is sent, you will be promptly refunded.

For our 4-week courses, we offer a 100% money back guarantee before the Wednesday that Lesson #2 is sent out from BetterPhoto. If for any reason you are not satisfied and you let the ordering department know that you would like to withdraw before the Wednesday that Lesson #2 is sent, you will be refunded within 7 days. After the second lesson has been sent out, no refunds will be given.

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