Icelandic ViewBug community member GulliVals is a self-taught photographer who spends a lot of his time in the mountains shooting in rugged terrains and  harsh weather. GulliVals shares the following quick tips on how to improve your Aurora Borealis photography.

1. Forecast. Timing is everting! You need to make sure that you are in an area where the Aurora activity is frequent and to be ready to go when the action is happening, remember to check the Aurora forecasts.

2. Location.  Find a good spot away from the city lights, I usually go out and spot these locations during the daylight. I tend to take photos of the spot I like once I find a good location and then review these photos in my computer before I go out at night.

3. RAW.  I use a Canon Mark II and a wide angle Samyang 14mm f2,8 lens for all my Aurora shots, I always shoot in RAW format.

4. Checklist.  Having a checklist will help you make sure you don't forget any must have item. My checklist includes: 1 Camera, 2 full charged batteries , 2 flash cards, 1 Tripod , 1 head light , 1 shutter release or wireless trigger.

5. Triggers.  Use the BULP mode, a shutter release trigger plus a tripod to ensure steady shots.

6. Focus. Focus your lens to infinity. Before it gets dark focus your camera on a distant infinity focal point such as a mountain horizon.

7. ISO. I always start with ISO 400 and can bring is up to ISO 1600 depending on the brightness and the northern lights activity.

8. Exposure. Adjust the exposure time rather than the aperture. I usually have an exposure of 5 to 30 seconds.

9. Foreground. Use the time when you are waiting for the Aurora to find a nice foreground in the area. You have to work fast when the light are active, do not use that time for finding subjects or for trying to figure out the right composition.

10. Jacket. Make sure you are well prepared for a cold night, dress properly!

Here is a bonus tip:

11. Don't Fall Asleep. Stay awake and ready, the northern lights show can be over very quickly.



We hope you got as much inspiration as we did! See more of GulliVals's awesome photos, visit his profile!