As some of you might have noticed i have been sucked into the wonders of Night Photography and i must say there is an awful lot to learn about that.
At first needing a tripod will let you say "But its more weight and uncomfortable!"
But if you think of it a DSLR is also no easy small pocket thing and i also don´t use a big ass 3kg steel -construction. As long its no Cell or pocketcamera- tripod youll be fine.
Beeing out at night in winter is a challenge in it self. Dress warm and get warm shoes you will be standing a long time waiting for the shot to finish.
I use Magic Lantern [link]
so i don´t need an external shutter-controller for 50-100€, its free and has a lot of nice features.
I usually look at the scene i want to shoot calculate the aperture from the Dof id like to have. often i use an F around F8. Focus and lock onto manual focus.
I crank up the shutter speed to 30sec and the ISO up to 1600 or higher to frame my shot. I use the built in EV meter to find the right Exposure (1-2 steps overexposed)
than i Calculate the right time at ISO100 by doubling the time every ISO-Step
30sec- 1600 ISO
I use Magic lantern for these long Exposures (Bulbmode)
also the Mirror-lockup 2secDelay and the Raw-format help a lot
to get a steady picture you also could cover the lens without touching it, release the shutter and uncover the lens.
I hope this helps and if you have questions, you know what to do!