Light trails - Dreamstime

We all love to take shots of buildings by night... especially when the building is lit. Why not add something special to that picture?

Here's a simple advice: Use a ND8 or higher filter. This filter allows you to expose longer. Exposing longer allows you to capture some light trails. Here are a few example photographs:

Well, the "trick" is to choose the right angle. Try shooting from the ground perspective... and try to position yourself behind a busy intersection, where the cars are forced to brake, hence the light will be more visible in the final shot.

Wait until the cars are moving, observe the pattern, use a tripod and a remote shutter device. Also look for your safety, don't get exposed in an unsafe place where a car can hit you. If there is the angle, you can leave only the camera and you can take a few steps back to ensure your safety!

You can include all kind of buildings, especially historical ones. One powerful image that is presented to the viewer in a different perspective, a perspective a bare human eye can't catch.

Choose a venue that is circulated by buses and you will have the lights all over the photograph. The light stops of buses are higher than the most vehicles.

I hope this simple blog post will open some new perspectives for your photography practice and I hope to share with you more useful information about simple tricks that can improve your technique.

Thank you for reading this and I can't wait for your feed back!

Photo credits: Bogdanzagan.

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November 02, 2012


Very striking images. That's something I've not tried yet but it is on my list. Thanks for your advice.

November 02, 2012


I have a little comment to add. Go out when in the afternoon when there is still day. Find your spots where you want to take your pictures and wait for dusk. Take your pictures when there is still some natural light available and the architectural illumination of the monuments is lit on, using your ND filter to prolong the exposure. Turn your WB to tungsten. This way you will get a nice dark blue sky, the orange effect of the illumation will be turned down. Your sky won't be black and dull and your images will not have an overall orange tone. Good luck.

November 01, 2012


Great pictures! Love the red and orange colors! Good luck with sales now :)

October 31, 2012


Awesome light trails, and great exposure : )

October 31, 2012


Very amazing images indeed.

October 31, 2012


Yes, I use to do it for myself because I love these images, but the answer is: What about sales of those kind of pictures? I have some in my hard disk, but I do not use to upload it by the moment.

October 30, 2012


Your images are amazing..

October 30, 2012


very artistic and innovative photos..even top view of flyovers and roads from a roof or from a foot-over bridge looks great with light trails...

October 30, 2012


Thanks Bogdan for your share; I will have to look to see how much expensive are and where I can get them ;)

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