Chanced upon the Bright Nights Lighting Experience while exploring the Viaduct Basin one evening on a recent trip north. So I broke out the recently acquired Panasonic G85 for some low light testing.
Micro Four Thirds cameras are not known for their low light prowess, so it was an interesting exercise given the wide range of lighting situations around the venue – and it’s always fun shooting art.
Camera set up – Lumix G Vario 12-60mm, ISO 800 with the Cinelike-D (slightly tweaked) profile.
Despite the obvious limitations, overall I was pleasantly surprised with the results. In reality, these kind of shots tend to work because the bright subjects look pretty good highlighted against dark backgrounds. It would have been nice to show some more context now and then but the shadows were super noisy. Yep, shadows often are, but it was frustrating to see the amount of information there and not be able to use it.
The 4k footage was a little better than 1080p as you’d expect, but without some powerful magic, there was not a lot of scope to salvage detail from those darker areas. Will try pushing the ISO a further next time and give the 25mm prime a whirl to make the whole thing more of an actual test ;)
Aside from some great moog music and whale song, background audio is from built-in mics – with some wind noise to prove it – but not too bad for picking up ambient vibes.
Full credit to the artists and organisers of the event, fun times.