Capturing beautiful photos in natural light during this time of the year might be a bit challenging. Here in Sweden, where I live, November and December is a very dark period.

When I first started out with photography I tried different ways to be able to shoot during this dark time. I tried to turn the lights on in the room I was shooting. I used the built-in flash on my camera. I even purchased an external flash to mount on my camera. But still, I wasn’t happy with my photos.

The external flash worked for some rare cases but the artificial light (especially when it came from above) made my photos really ugly!

Shooting with natural ligth when it's dark outside

Along the way, I learned how to work with natural light in dark indoor settings and this is how I usually do it:

How to take photos when it’s dark

1. Make sure to turn off any artificial light in the room you shoot

2. Set your camera on a tripod.

3. Adjust the camera settings to “TV”-mode (or “S” on some cameras)
In this mode you manually select the shutter speed while the camera automatically adjusts the aperture for you. Select a long shutter speed (1 second or more if you have a still subject) so the camera sensor can gather a lot of light.

4. Adjust the camera settings and select self-timer: 2 or 10 seconds.

This setting is just to avoid that the camera shakes when you press the shutter button.

5. Turn up the ISO
ISO somewhere around 1600 depending on your camera.

6. Press the shutter button.

Camera Settings Shutter Speed

So my challenge to you is to try this setup next time you’re tempted to turn on the lights! Comment below and let me know how it worked out for you!


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