Mostly in the older parts of San Diego there are several neon signs marking Neighborhoods.
So I thought I might photograph them in the Blue hour (after sundown).

This first photo is at the start of El Cajon Boulevard. I used a wide angle lens, my 16-35mm zoom. Photo at 32mm, 20 second exposure at F/16 and ISO100. This was a single exposure and I had taken several in an attempt to get head lights and tail lights in the photo. This one came out the best. The starburst effect on this lens is superb.


The second one is in North Park and I couldn’t get a clear photo close in so I stood at the closest street corner and used a 70mm lens. This is a 30 second exposure at F/16 and ISO 100. This time I used a 2 stop neutral density filter to extend the exposure time out to try and capture more car lights. Two stops means the exposure time becomes 4 times as long. The starbursts are not as nice on this lens (I think).

This third shot I did last night by my old condo. Again I used my 16-35mm zoom and a 2 stop ND filter. This one was done completely different. First off I faced west towards the sundown giving me the orange glow and less deep blue sky like you get looking east. I faced west primarily because I wanted to exclude the stop light right above the sign. But I do like the sky in this one. Another difference is that I took several exposures by manually using a different exposure time with the idea in mind that I would blend different parts of several photo’s together to create the final picture. I wanted to get as many car light photo’s as I could and then blend them together using luminosity masking. But in the end the car lights came from 1 photo, the sky and neon light from another, and the building lights from another. The trick to doing this is to not change anything but exposure time or ISO once you start.  Then the photo’s will align properly in Photoshop. I  used 35mm length, F/16 aperture, ISO 200, and various times here.

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