It's funny - my passion for night photography was born in the graveyard in Flemington, NJ where I did much of my growing up (the town, that is - not the graveyard!). It all started with my Yashica FX3000, a Tamron 24-70mm lens plus fisheye adapter, tripod, Vivitar 283 and a cable release. My good friend Bryan and I were standing atop the hill overlooking Flemington and I asked him to stand in front of the lens. I opened the lens and locked it down, popped the flash and then he moved out of the way! I was astonished at first and thought of asking him to move back, but then decided against it. The result was a half-ghosted image of him with the city lights fading through his body and the graveyard surrounding. I was elated - happy mistake, indeed. (Note: I'll find this shot and upload for y'all.) This was back in '92. Flash forward to 2010 and I am again spending lots of night hours silently shooting long exposures in a cemetery. Only this time it's the famous Sleepy Hollow Cemetery - only six miles from my home in Dobbs Ferry. How cool is that? Big thanks to my buddy Gabe for introducing me to my own backyard and Jim Logan, who runs the Historic Society for Sleep Hollow Cemetery.
TECH NOTES: The lamplight tour shots were shot with a tripod, electronic cable release and whatever light the tour brought with it. The Headless Horseman was shot with a Profoto AcuteB, Nikon SB900 and the PocketWizard Mini/Flex for Nikon I am Beta testing. I've come a long way gear-wise from '92 but the techniques are essentially the same. Shoot for the light, no matter how long it takes.
Here are some choice photos from a lamplight tour in October and then you get to see a shot of a real Headless Horseman!
I highly recommend taking a lamplight tour. It's full of fascinating stories about some amazing people having their final rest in Sleepy Hollow.
And finally, the Headless Horseman!