10 Must Try Film Simulation Recipes for Night Photography

Night Statue – Jackson Hole, WY – Fujifilm X100V – Serr’s 500T Recipe

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!

Find these Film Simulation Recipes and nearly 300 more on the Fuji X Weekly — Film Recipes App!

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  1. Eric Anderson · April 7

    Night photography is a fun one as there is no consistent ambient color temperature to rally around. I find for example the last twenty minutes of morning civilian twilight to be intriguing as the colors change rapidly from ‘night’ to ‘day’, so what is the recipe for this situation? For my X100V I stumbled upon using the Ektachrome 100SW recipe with white balance changed to the blueish ‘Florescent 3’ and R/B offset to -5/-4. This works for about twenty minutes as the twilight color change in the sky walks its way down to the horizon.

    – Eric

  2. Junot · April 7

    Would love to see a (Patreon?) option to filter recipes like this!

    For example: filter recipes by time of day (dusk, dawn, night), type of weather (rain, fog, summer, snow), type of light (indoors, bar/café), etc.

    I usually pick a recipe up front when I go out, but sometimes I find myself in a certain situation and would love to quickly check the app to find a matching recipe. A filter like that would be awesome and so much helpful!

    – Junot.nl

    • Ritchie Roesch · April 8

      That’s something I’ve wanted to do, but I’m really stuck on the implementation. For instance, I might like a certain Recipe for a certain situation, but you might not for that same circumstance. I can certainly make recommendations, but I think there will always be some who disagree with those suggestions, because each have their own tastes. I’m definitely open to ideas to move forward on this. I appreciate the input!

      • Junot · April 9

        You got a point there and you got me thinking.

        How about implementing one or two custom fields and custom values that we can use in recipes and filter?

        For instance: let’s say you give us two custom fields.
        I would name my custom field 1 “Weather”. Every recipe now has a field “Weather” that I can give a value and filter on. The recipes I like, I can give the weather field a value: for instance, in the Kodachrome 64 recipe I would give the “Weather” field the value “Rainy weather”.

        I would name my custom field 2 “ISO” and tag some recipes I like with values like “<6400", "6400-12800", "12800", so I can easily see what recipe to use when I want a clean of grainy look.

        So every user can sort and filter on custom fields 🙂

        Hope I explained it well and I guess it could be a lot of work to implement, but it would improve the app significantly (for me at least! especially in the field).

        – Junot.nl

      • Ritchie Roesch · April 10

        Thanks so much! I think I understand. I’ll figure out something… might take a few months. The feedback is greatly appreciated!

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