So, there I was, at the edge of darkness. The sun had set and a full moon flooded the Harbor. Tugboat Inn — closed for the season — I would annoy no one. A small red building at the end of the Inn's parking lot called out to me and I responded.
A combination of moonlight and an adjacent street light made the red building glow. Long exposure rattled around in my head. I seldom carry a tripod and figured the exposure I anticipated would be a few seconds (at least) so I needed a solid camera rest.
I rolled down the driver's side window of the car and lodged my camera in the door corner adjacent to the pop up lock button. My camera jammed into place with the len's aperture at “F8” allowing the camera to come up with a ballpark exposure time using a fairly conservative ISO setting.
The magic of the digital age of photography showed me very quickly that exposure had lasted a bit too long causing a mild “wash out” of my scene. By shifting camera settings to manual the next exposure was better. Mixing illumination from the moon and the street light made the little red building a lovely rich red with the early evening sky behind, a beautiful deep blue. I'm not sure how well this will show up in the newspaper due to the limitations of print, but I can assure you the colors were rich and saturated.
For all who photograph, please do mess around with long exposure just after sunset, or just before sunrise. Probably would be wise to use a tripod or find good leaning spots. And for added fun, sometimes allow your camera to move during a long exposure yielding unusual and often fascinating surprises.
The uncertainty of experimentation is invigorating. There is always the delete button!