Night Skylines

City skylines take one a whole new life at night. Skylines have a multitude of lights from buildings and other sources which can be very pretty. If you're lucky enough to be in a city with a harbour you can look across, this effect is multiplied because the lights will reflect off water on a calm night.


  • A tripod, or at least somewhere to rest the camera.


  • A city, preferably one with a harbour


  • A night with little to no wind.


  • Set your ISO to as low as your camera will allow, such as 80 or 100. You may need to seperately disable auto-iso.
  • If available, set your camera focus to infinity. Because it's dark and your shooting building which are far away, your camera would probably be unable to focus normally.


  • Find a spot that gives you a pretty view of the city.
  • If there's a harbour which you can look across, use that and get reflections of lights from buildsings
  • Other good shots include overlooking major roads with skyline in background see car trails
  • It can be tricky to get the exposure correct at night, what often happens is your camera will overexpose the shot, which meaning all the pretty lights will be solid white instead of having nice gradiens. If your camera has manual mode, this is a good time to use it because it tends to be the easiest way to make fine tuned adjustments. If not, set your camera to P mode and make adjustments using exposure compensation.
  • Take a few shots, and use 1/3 stop different exposure for each. It can be difficult to tell which shot looks best just from the cameras LCD.