Fireworks - How To

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Tuesday, May 3, 2005

Fireworks - How To   

Minimum equipment required:
Camera - with a T (Time) or B (Bulb) setting so that you can hold the shutter open.

Tripod - Strong and sturdy.

A black card - I made one from a piece of foam board, about the size of a 3x5 file card. Spray the card with flat black paint.

Camera settings:
Shutter - T or B
Focus - infinity
ISO - 100
White balance - incandescent

Set your camera on the tripod and aim it toward the area where the fireworks bursts are expected. Lock all the movements to eliminate any camera movement.

You can usually see the fireworks as they rise in the air before the burst goes off.

Cover the lens with the black card and open the shutter. As you see a shot rise, remove the card and leave it off until the burst starts to die off. Replace the card but do not close the shutter. Do this two or three times, then close the shutter. This is how you get multiple exposures in one frame.

Repeat this process throughout the fireworks show. Don't try to get too many bursts in each frame. Often less is better.

  • Gary Navarre Premium user United States (Private)
    12 years 6 months ago
    Hi Crew, I tryed something similar last year for with my K-1000. Old but reliable tripod, had to hold the shutter release by finger cause my release cable craped out, ±15 second, infinity, apiture wide open, Fuji 200? film. I notice a streak along left sides I think from old film, need fresh next year. My new Optio 60 only T's 1 second. Might turn out. I like film for long exposures. Happy holidays and stay in there! GindaUP
  • 10 years 1 month ago
    Hello! Thanks for posting the tip on photographing fireworks (I followed a link from ooO(PETER)Ooo's site). Now I just have to figure out how to set my digital SLR to infinity focus..... The 4th of July is just around the corner, so I'll be giving this a try. Thanks again! ~~Deb~~
  • Tarbet United Kingdom (Private)
    12 years 8 months ago
    That sounds interesting to try. I hand held my camera and had it on night setting although later when I checked it I must have moved it to moving setting. It was very dark and I could not read things. I was pleased with the outcome anyway.