Here's a recent night photo of Hollywood and downtown Los Angeles. My goal was to capture the vibrancy of Los Angeles at night.
Cityscapes can be a little tricky (static subject that can be captured by anyone with a camera), but I like how this turned out. The image lights and color pop, but on closer examination, there's a lot going on here. I love how the old residential section of Hollywood is shaded by trees and selectively washed by streetlights. That shade then gives way to the ancient Knickerbocker hotel, the iconic Capitol Records building, and the exploding neon off Hollywood Blvd. To the left, the 101 appears like a river of car lights snaking on then off camera, then winding back into frame flowing towards the downtown skyline. The evening especially clear (it was windy), but even then the camera did not record any starlight, just muted reflections ranging from warm to cool cross the horizon. However, if you look closely on the right, a plane moving across the frame leaves a wake of flashing lights.
The shooting location is off Mulholland Drive. For the shot, I used a Nikon D800 with 85mm f/1.8 lens, f/16 for 15 seconds. The digital negative was processed in Lightroom and Nik Software (Color Efex Pro 4 for tonal contrast and a light touch of HDR Efex.) It makes a gorgeous 13x19 print.