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sherlock
07-01-2005, 08:03 PM
Hey,

I want to start a thread where people could post tips on photographing fireworks. I myself need some help as this will be my first time, and I'm sure other people will need some advice also. If anyone could help me out with some tips about shoothing them with film (yes I am still shooting film) that would be great also! Thanks!


Andrew S.

kornhauser
07-02-2005, 07:32 AM
Hey,

I want to start a thread where people could post tips on photographing fireworks. I myself need some help as this will be my first time, and I'm sure other people will need some advice also. If anyone could help me out with some tips about shoothing them with film (yes I am still shooting film) that would be great also! Thanks!


Andrew S.

I love shooting fireworks! I've done it plenty with my 35mm and looking forward to this July 4th to try it with my digital!

Here's the steps. You have to constantly bracket your shots. BTW- Make sure you've got a good tripod and either a shutter release cable or remote (to prevent camera shake when the shutter is opened).

Next, set your focus to infiniti. If you got a manual focus, focus at a mid-range building or tree top.

Set your f-stop range at 5.6. Take one shot at that, then bracket your f-stops higher and higher.

Do the same with your shutter speeds. I like keeping mine open around ten to twelve seconds (time it). Though I have done as high as thirty seconds and gotten good results.

Playing with the f-stop and shutter speed and bouncing around within it is the trick. There is no perfect f-stop and apperature. What you hope for is one GREAT shot out of ten and take a hundred to get more.

sherlock
07-02-2005, 11:36 AM
Hey,

Thanks for the advice! Yes I do have a good tripod (Bogen 3221 WN) which I usually use for landscape shots. I do not have a remote release though, but when shooting landscapes I usually use the self timer to dampen vibrations. Will this work OK too with the fireworks if I can time it with the delay right? Do you have any suggestions about what the best film speed for this kindof situation is? Thanks again!


Andrew S.

kornhauser
07-02-2005, 03:55 PM
Hey,

Thanks for the advice! Yes I do have a good tripod (Bogen 3221 WN) which I usually use for landscape shots. I do not have a remote release though, but when shooting landscapes I usually use the self timer to dampen vibrations. Will this work OK too with the fireworks if I can time it with the delay right? Do you have any suggestions about what the best film speed for this kindof situation is? Thanks again!


Andrew S.

I've used the self-timer before when I left the remote at the house and it works fine. As far as speed, I set my Nikon digital to ISO 100. That usually captures the best colors.

BTW- Most of my experience just comes from playing around. Trial and error always does best!

floating
07-05-2005, 05:05 PM
The best way to get good color for fireworks is to either use tungsten (type "A") film, or set the color balance of a digital camera to the "lightbulb", also tungsten, setting.
This gives much better whites as the color is much closer to 3400 kelvin (tungsten) than daylight (5500)

I usually shoot 160 asa film at about 5.6, & use 1/2 ~ 2" exposures. Too long a speed will begin to record color in the blank sky areas, & this looses much of the effect.

aparmley
07-05-2005, 06:16 PM
Excellent advice Floating - I discovered this on Sunday for myself as well and found that the Tugsten WB settting produced more accurate color in my fireworks photos

I first had the WB set to Auto and I discovered that the ambient lightening [street lights, etc] casted an amber hazed thoughout the photos.

And I learned the following lesson the hard way, anticipate the finale sequence because the sky will brighten up between 2 - 4 full stops, maybe more? [depending on the size of the display] ... I was using 2 sec exposures and found the finale all washed out, I should have been using at least 1/10 of second exposures for the finale.

wall7760
07-21-2005, 01:53 PM
I have also found that if you are really close to the fireworks. Say if you are shooting you own off, and you have a good enough lense that you can just lay down, and you do not even need a tripod and there will not be any shake in the photos.