Photographing Neon

I was caught by the message portrayed by the neon light. I think it’s a good one by the way!! Seen in the entry to the Hard Rock Cafe in Atlanta, Georgia.

When we are shooting digital (and who isn’t for the most part?) we sometimes have what I call ‘Light Creep’. It is a phenomenon of different types of lighting and the frequency of the patterns or waves creating that light. In the neon example below you will see lines appear on the image indicted by arrows. This shows up when the pulsing of a light is slower than the shutter speed of the capture. It is very apparent in neon and florescent lighting situations. The pulses of light are slow but not apparent to the naked eye and shown by the camera. But, when a proper shutter speed is used for a lighting situation the camera will record a scene as the eye does. IE the shutter speed needs to be slower than the pulse of light…

hard rock cafe neonArrows show the dark lines where the light is not being recorded.

hard rock cafe neonProper shutter speed (slower) allows the entire lighting spectrum to show in the neon sign.

Be aware if you are capturing images under lighting conditions that are florescent, sodium, neon and possibly others. Slow down your shutter speed or add your own light to the scene or suffer the consequences.

Yours in Creative Photography,     Bob

PS – Remember, no nuclear weapons are allowed in Hard Rock Cafe! (a good rule!)