Yellow house with some Christmas lights

Christmas Lights on Yellow House

Hello, and welcome to the first post in my gallery of photographs using the equipment recommended here at We have two goals with the gallery: one is to showcase the equipment recommended; the other is to become a better photographer! I am not professional photographer; I just want to take the best pictures as economically as possible. My New Year’s Resolution is actually to take one picture a day, so these may not be the most artistic or technical wonders. 

Our first entry is some night photography using ambient light from Christmas lights. We wanted to get this one out of the way right away, because the holiday season is pretty much over. For this photograph, I used a Nikon D90, a Nikon 18-55 VR, and a Manfrotto tripod. I used “Program” mode on the camera, but used the exposure override to +5.0. I bracketed up from the camera’s recommendation in steps; +5.0 was the highest the camera would give. This blew out the lights themselves, but lit the rest of the house nicely. I rather like the effect, a bit like the place is aflame at the eaves. But it’s not. The tripod was essential, of course, to get the sharpness as it was over a 1 second exposure or so.