The introduction of photography using neon is relatively recent. The term “neon photography” refers to the use of ultraviolet light, as well as custom neon signs. Different colors dimensions, sizes, and shapes of neon signs can make photographs brighter and more appealing. The best time to be taking photos is at night because the neon lights look better in the darkness. Follow my tips for photography with neon that will become useful while making your first night photograph.
20 Tips for Photography with Neon
I’ve prepared for you a checklist of tips that will help you succeed in neon light photography and take incredible photos.
Tip 1. Get Information on Neon Photography
Neon photography is a type of portrait street shooting when a neon light source is important. These photographs are generally taken outdoors, but photographers may also design the lighting for studios.
Urban neon photography
Night photos have their special appeal and charm. Even mundane objects, which aren’t noticed much during the day, take on new life and have a completely new look. You begin to notice familiar urban objects and scenes in a new way. The objects you see are highlighted by the absence of night light. Photography of neon cities requires long exposures. As a result, you can use a variety of methods and strategies for the creative and dramatic photography of various kinds of objects. Furthermore, you do not need to worry about changing the timing of daylight and sun.
Neon portrait photography
Due to the distinctive look of the megalopolises, this trend is very popular in contemporary photography. It’s not possible to not plan a photo session in this modern style in the evening in the evening when the entire place is lit up with neon lights of various colors. Many photographers also organize the necessary lighting inside their studios to capture incredible neon portraits.
Neon sign photography
Custom Neon signs have been a frequent option for passers-by and photographers since their inception. They were the first to be viewed by those who called neon the “living flame.” Unfortunately, nowadays it is extremely difficult to locate original neon signs. If you’re interested to take photos of neon signs take a trip for walks in the evening or go to the cinema using your camera. Sometimes, you might find the most amazing lighting in a window of a shop or the sign that advertises a tiny cafe in the most unusual places.
Tip 2. Shoot at the Most Suitable Time
Pick the most suitable time to take neon pictures with light. If you only care about the signboard, select any moment. If you’re looking to photograph the surrounding area, Blue Hour is the best choice. This is the 10 minutes after sunset or 15 minutes before sunrise. You’ll be able to see the objects that surround you in such bright conditions. However it’s very dark, and the neon signs will look great. The complete darkness is perfect in situations where you require only signs. Night photography helps notice some patterns that don’t look as interesting in the sunlight.
In these conditions, you will have enough light so that the surrounding objects can be seen. It will still be dark and neon signs appear great. For those situations where you need only signs in total darkness, this is ideal.
Tip 3. Try out your skills in Deserted and Quiet Places
You don’t have to concentrate in noisy places if you have trouble concentrating. Instead, search for peaceful spots to snap photos of neon light fixtures free of distractions. Be prepared for neon signs that can be seen in noisy and crowded areas. This is one of the major disadvantages of neon street photography. What can you do to avoid being captured by pushy and anxious people? You can spend a bit more time looking for an ad in the neon that isn’t far from busy streets. You’ll have all the space you require and will be able to explore as much as you like.
Tip 4. Photograph Models
By inviting a model for shooting in front of the neon light, you could use several exciting ideas. Invite a model to lie on the ground under a sign in blue that reads “slow down”. Reflectors can be utilized to prevent shadows from appearing on the face. You can also use a reflector to lighten specific areas of the photo in photo editing. Neon portraits are brilliant and original pictures of portraits. To learn how to make stunning headshots and portraits, I suggest the course How to Shoot Photographs in Any Location by Frank Doorhof.
Tip 5. Portrait Pro Lightroom Presets
The main feature of photographing from above is the possibility to capture the transition between shadow and light.
When you shoot from below, you can visually lift the subject’s position in the frame or make it larger and more significant. However, this type of angle should not be used in neon portrait photography. You will end up with a comical face and a large neck and chin.
If you take your photos on the ground, you will be able to create photos that can give life to the unanimated object.
Level shooting can be done when the camera is placed side-by-side with the subject. This perspective is neutral and natural.
Tip 6. Benefit from Environmental Light
Even the smallest of changes in lighting could affect the final image. This is why it’s important to use all available lighting sources when shooting in the dark or at dusk. The subject should be bright so that you can see less of the noise of your neon photographs. The light should go toward the model’s face and not toward their back. This problem can be solved by making the model shift slightly in the correct direction.
Tip 7. Use Special Lighting
Every size of neon sign can serve as a light source. A sign that is even a foot in size can be used to illuminate models for portrait photography. It could be as simple words as “Pizza” or “Open”. You can make amazing artwork using a variety of ideas. Use neon lights for the style, lighting, and colors of your nighttime portraits.
Portraits Lighting The Shot
This book will guide you to create the best lighting for your photos. READ THE BOOK
Tip 8. Add Suitable Props
Props of different types are recommended for neon photography. It could be a prism. It can give an intriguing and subtle look to your photos when you place a prism on the front of your camera. The light reflected from it favorably affects your image. CDs can serve similar purposes.
- I would suggest you read more about the crystal ball technique and the ways it could be utilized to create neon photographs.
Tip 9. Shoot RAW and Save the Image Data
Although some people prefer shooting using JPEG format, I would advise you to choose RAW images. It will save more data and have higher quality. This format can also make it easier to edit your images. Because of the neon sign’s differing brightness, you’ll not be allowed to leave out this step. It is vital to edit photos of neon lights. The size of RAW files is a major disadvantage. These photos occupy a lot of memory card space. You should also be aware that RAW images need to be converted before you can take a photo.
Tip 10. Apply Split Toning
This is a well-known effect that was extensively employed in the early days of film. Split Toning refers to the tinting of light areas in black-and-white photographs using a single color. You can create the required contrast by altering the hues. Make use of a basic understanding of color theory in your photos of neon. Don’t forget to include the intensity of shadows. Remember that the light highlights are always light and yellow. The darkest shades are the darkest blue.
Tip 11. Be Careful with Filters
Filters are not something that professional photographers are taking seriously. Filters are an excellent option if you’re looking to lessen the noise in your photographs. It is possible to use the ‘Fade’ tool to smoothen out shadows that are noisy and create the illusion of a cleaner image. The “Exposure towards the right” technique is frequently employed in photography using neon. The principle behind this trick is to create an image that is brighter than you want and makes it darker. Also, you can reduce noise. You should not do excessive photo editing. It is important to not overlook this.
Tip 12. Study Your Camera
You must be aware of all the capabilities of your camera and its weak points. Certain models might produce excessively sharp images while others might underexpose the images. Certain cameras can adjust different settings for neon photography while others don’t have such an application. To capture stunning photos try your camera out and learn as much as you can about it.