Which Film Simulation Recipes are good for nighttime photography? With nearly 300 to choose from, it can be difficult to know when to use which Recipe. Almost all film emulsions are either Daylight-balanced or Tungsten-balanced; similarly, most Recipes are intended for daytime photography, and some are intended for nighttime photography. There are also some that, even though made for sunny conditions, still do well after the sun goes down. So let me suggest to you 10 Film Simulation Recipes that do well at night!
Depending on the exact light situation, some Film Simulation Recipes that are intended for daytime use will still look good at night, and other times they will produce a strong warm cast that you might not like. While adjusting the White Balance to better suite the situation is always an acceptable option (“season to taste” the Recipe), picking a Recipe that is intended for the light situation you are in is my preferred method. Like film, it’s better to pick the “right” one that matches the conditions you’ll be shooting in, but there’s no right or wrong way to do photography, so you’ll have to decode what works for you.
Of course, everyone has different tastes. There are some Recipes that you might love, and some that you might not. Your favorite after-dark Recipe might not be in this list, as it’s not comprehensive. There are certainly other Recipes that I have personally used and liked for nighttime photography; however, these are ones that I think are especially well-suited. A couple were tough cuts, and would certainly have been included if it was 15 Recipes and not 10.
If you are not sure which Film Simulation Recipe to use at night, try one of these!
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