How to take New Year‘s Fireworks photos

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The year 2009 is coming to its end and we should start thinking about how to take the photos of the midnight sky and the New Year's Fireworks. This kind of photos has its own magic atmosphere, so check your camera, batteries and memory cards and go ahead for fireworks photos.

Taking fireworks photos is not too much difficult, however it needs a practice. You also need the right equipment. Yes, you can take fireworks photos using the low cost compact digital camera, but for great results you need a D-SLR camera. Forgot to use the camera in your mobile phone.

The necessary equipments for fireworks photos

  • Digital Camera. You should use the D-SLR
  • Telephoto lens
  • The right place. You shouldn't stay too much close to fireworks, keep a distance on a place with a clean lookout
  • A remote shutter with a bulb function support
  • Tripod

At first, make sure you are able to work with your camera. I highly recommend you to forget about scenic modes, like night shot or fireworks. Don't worry to use the fully manual mode described as M.

Tip: if you are not sure what the different modes on your digital camera means, check the article Differences between Automatic and Semi-Automatic Camera Modes.

The manual mode (M) gives you full control over the aperture and the time. Set the aperture size to F11 or so to get a sharp image in all its area. Then set the time to a "bulb" mode. Set the automatic sharpening off and disable autofocus.

Fireworks photo

Fireworks photo

(photo source)

Setting the time for fireworks photo

Why I recommend the bulb mode? Normally, the fireworks explosion and colors takes about 4 to 10 seconds. So you couldn't know how long time do you need to set to get a photos with a complete fireworks shape. But using the bulb mode you can do it. When the digital camera operates under the bulb mode, the time is simply as long as you keep the shutter pressed.

Fireworks photo

Fireworks photo

(photo source)

So build your tripod and connect the camera on it. The tripod is needed because no one is able to keep the camera in hands without movement for such a long time. Connect the remote shutter. I prefer wire shutter - it's cheaper and more reliable the wireless shutters. The remote shutter is needed because you would like to see the fireworks on the sky instead in the camera display.

Fireworks photo

Fireworks photo

(photo source)

How to take fireworks photo?

Now, you should have all your equipments ready for taking the fireworks photos. Prepare the scene in your digital camera and wait. As soon as the fireworks shape starts painting press the remote shutter button. Keep your eyes on the sky and release the shutter after the shape comes to its final state. As I mentioned above, it could take about 4 to 10 seconds depending on the fireworks.

Fireworks photo

Fireworks photo

(photo source)

The solution with a bulb mode and remote shutter gives you the ability to take perfect fireworks photos and see the fireworks on the sky together. It is much better than looking to camera's viewfinder or display for a whole midnight.

Happy New Year 2010!

Tip: We have also an older article about taking photos of fireworks: How to Take Pictures of Fireworks.

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