How to take night shots of trees with my D5100

edited March 2012 Posted in » Nikon D5100 Forum
I was talking with a fellow D5100 owner over on my Facebook page and she was wondering how to take night shots of trees. I thought it would be beneficial to share our conversation with all of you...

Carol's Question: I wonder if you could advise how to take night shots of an almond tree that is covered with beautiful white blossoms against a night sky. I have D5100 with 18-55mm kit lens and 70-200mm VR lens.

Moose's Answer: Howdy Carol - In order to capture that type of shot, you'll need the help of a tripod, a remote and bulb mode. Once you have your D5100 mounted to a tripod, go ahead and enable Manual mode. Next, rotate the smaller command dial to the left until you see the words "Bulb" pop up on the LCD screen info panel.

In bulb mode, the shutter will remain open for as long as you hold down the shutter button. If you were to try this by hand to a D5100 mounted on a tripod, you're shots would be affected by "camera shake".

In order to eliminate any chance of camera shake, you'll need to utilize a remote like the MC-DC2.

In regards to the amount of time to hold the shutter open, it all depends on the amount of available light. I would start with 1 minute and double it each time until you get the type of effect you're after. Hope that helps and happy shooting! :)

Carol's Reply: Will a ML-L3 Wireless Remote work with the D5100? I am in Turkey at the moment and the ML-L3 is all I have with me.

Moose's Reply: Yep, the ML-L3 will work! Glad I could help! :)


  • What I am thinking is this: couldn't I use my self timer to avoid camera shake as well? Like, set it to 5 secs, and then, still using the tripod, focus in and shoot? I know it's not as instantaneous as the remote, but it's a trick my wife and I have used with cheaper cameras. B-)
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