How To Take Great Fireworks Photos
Photographing fireworks can be a bit tricky due to a variety of factors. The crowds can complicate what kind of access you’ll have and the uncertainty of where and when the fireworks will unfold in the sky can also keep you guessing. Allow yourself a few junk shots in the beginning to get settled and, if possible, try to get to the site early to stake a claim for the best space.
Because you don’t want your camera to keep searching for what to focus on in each shot, set your camera to Manual Focus Mode and your ISO at 200. You can preset your camera in advance by focusing your lens on something that is about the same distance from where you anticipate the fireworks to be and then fix that setting in place in Manual Mode.
Shoot Slow (Shutter Speed): Part of getting the perfect fireworks shot is remembering that a fireworks burst takes time to unfold and expand, so your shutter speed needs to be slower to accommodate that time lapse. You can select timing from one to several seconds on a DSLR. Ideally, you want the shutter to open at the beginning of the burst and then close at the peak of the burst. This takes a bit of practice and anticipating timing but you’ll find you improve quickly
Also, if you don’t have a wireless remote release to use with your tripod, now’s the perfect time to get one! A cable release will prevent camera shake or moving the camera during the shot and it will also allow you to keep your eyes trained on the sky and ready to react at the right time.
Author Amanda Jones is a photographer working at Wholesale Photo Cafe and Digital Imaging Center in the Midland Park Shopping Center, 85 Godwin Ave. This article originally appeared on her blog at wholesalephoto.com.
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