It has been said that the beauty of old Europe knows no equal. This collection on Vancouver at Night proves that to be incorrect. Even before the camera Vincent knew: “It often seems to me that the night is much more alive and richly coloured than the day.” Fine art photography stands in contrast to photojournalism and commercial photography. It is as much a creative process as is painting and sculpture. Limited edition photography is now accepted as an art form worldwide. Photography in its purest sense is an artistic medium and is accepted as such around the world today. Many fine art photographers are also artists. “Fine art photography is sometimes so challenging, at least for me, that I often think it would be easier to just paint it…”
Vancouver at night and photography as art
Walking the Tracks in Kits was taken about twenty minutes before the sun sank out of sight. It was a warm evening with very few people around. Not sure why. Maybe they were down at the beach or enjoying a true vegetable/floral salad this part of Vancouver is known for. During the day this is just an old train track but in Vancouver at Night these areas come alive. I walked these tracks for about a mile earlier in the evening and then returned to this location a few minutes before that golden moment arrived when I took this shot.
The name ‘Kitsilano’ is derived from the name of a Squamish chief, ‘Xats’alanexw’. The home of First Nations people for untold thousands of years, this beautiful area has evolved from very dense forest to several highly populated neighbourhoods in just over 150 years. I’m not sure that’s progress but it is a very interesting and beautiful place. I’ve walked many times from Granville Island to Jericho Park and back, especially in the early spring and late fall. With Burrard Street to the east, Alma Street to the west, and 16th Avenue to the south, Kits is located in the West Side of Vancouver, along the shore of English Bay. Close proximity to downtown Vancouver, walking distance to parks, beaches and popular Granville Island has made the neighbourhood a very desirable community to live.
A challenge for the photographer
This beautiful old tree I found in Queen Elizabeth Park. There are many locations like this that people just walk by on their way to somewhere, hardly aware of the beauty and history that exists here. But the photographer knows and stops for a while.
The challenge for the photographer is to compose as much as possible in the camera. Nothing is staged and you often have to return to a location when conditions seem right, when the sun is low in the sky, or when someone is available to “turn on some lights”. The term “Night photography” is a misnomer. It should rightly be called “available light photography”.
Night photography usually refers to photographs taken outdoors between dusk and dawn. We generally have a choice between using artificial light and using a long exposure. With the progress of digital, higher-sensitivity digital image sensors, wide-aperture lenses, and the ever-greater power of urban lights, night photography is increasingly possible using available light.
This Website is a good reference and good place to get started in understanding what night photography is all about. There are several of these on the Internet. To quote briefly from this site, “The general rule for night photography is to use the lowest ISO possible and the widest aperture available. Digital SLR sensors will start to suffer from high noise at higher ISO values.”