Friday, July 1, 2011

Fire Up The Works! And Get Great Photos Of Them...

There are certain impressive visual displays in life that I admire and sometimes even marvel at, but never really have the urge to photograph. Rainbows and lightning come to mind. I truly appreciate them, but have little or no interest in capturing them in a photo.

Fireworks also fall into that category. Don't get me wrong. I love a good fireworks show, and have many many wonderful memories of seeing them with friends and family, mostly from when I was little.

It's just that, for me, it's all about witnessing these things as large as life in real-time with real people. I find photos rarely come close to capturing that experience.

But I completely understand folks' desire to get great (or even good) fireworks pictures. The line between classic theme and cliché is sometimes a thin one, and I think fireworks qualify as both.

Still, it can be quite a challenge, and with that in mind, I'd like to point you to a very good guide to making those images memorable from photographyreview.com:

Fireworks Photography Tips

Now, if you follow these guidelines, I think you'll find it's not too terribly difficult. But it may require you to shoot in a much more traditional manner: using a tripod and camera with manually adjustable settings. If you notice my pathetically blurry fireworks pic above, you can plainly see what happens when one tries to use a meager point & shoot (handheld no less) to do the work of a DSLR...

Obviously, in this age of smart phones, many of you will simply use your phone cameras to shoot the fireworks display. Or at least try. I really have no idea what kind of results you will get, but if that's your plan, I wish you the best of luck. Maybe you'll be pleasantly surprised.

Have a great FOURTH everyone!