How to Photograph Fireworks Like a Pro

How to photograph fireworks like a proThe New York Times ran a great story a few weeks back called “How to Photograph Fireworks Like a Pro” for the 4th of July. It’s obviously now too late to use the advice on the 4th, but there are plenty of other places and times to see fireworks like Disneyland, baseball games and festivals. It’s a long article full of tips, so read the whole thing. For now, here are some of my favorite bits:

  • “Fred Conrad, former NYT staff photographer [says:] ‘Just taking a picture of explosives bursting in the air doesn’t mean anything. It’s the things other than the fireworks that actually make the picture interesting.’ Look for locations that put interesting landmarks like iconic statues, soaring skylines or historic bridges between yourself and the fireworks display. This gives your images context, letting viewers know whether you were in Brooklyn, New York, or Sydney, Australia.”
  • “‘It’s important to shoot fireworks using manual mode, otherwise the changing light levels during the show will confuse the camera’s metering system,’ [Dave] Sanders wrote.”
  • “The biggest limitation [of using a smartphone to shoot] is that smartphone cameras, because of their design, are not capable of multisecond exposure times. There are, however, apps that let you simulate this behavior by automatically merging multiple (shorter) exposures into a single image.” We featured one of the best slow-shutter apps from the piece as a Travel App of the Week. See it here.

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Johnny Jet
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