Sunday, July 5, 2009

What did you do on Independence Day?

Yesterday, I slept late, then got up and mowed my lawn. Not too exciting, ya? but I had plans for the evening.

I have been going to Digital Photography School since OhCaptain turned me on to them. Recently they had a fireworks tutorial that I read here.

Last night, I went to see the local baseball team (AAA Memphis Redbirds) because they had fireworks after the game. Unfortunately, I was disappointed with my results, so I'll have to try again next year -- it's all part of the learning curve. Here are a few of the less dreadful ones.

This firework looks like a palm tree:

This is okay, but you need to click to enlarge to enjoy it:

One of the tips in the tutorial was to include people. I tried that in the next two:

One last shot:

I hope you had a fun Fourth of July.

[For those interested in the technical side: I shot in manual mode, and I turned off the auto-focus and the image stabilization. I used a tripod with a shutter release, and I took off my lens filter. I kept the ISO at 100 and used a range of F8 to F16. I used bulb setting, meaning I could hold the shutter open for as long as I liked. (I used different times from one to five to 15 seconds. In general, five seconds worked best.)]


  1. Good start. Who won the game?

  2. Nice shots. I really like the last one! I don't know a thing about photography, but I would really like to learn. I'm going to check out that site. Thanks for the link.

  3. Some very nice shots there. I was out too this weekend with the camera and hope to have some to post soon. I always wish there were more opportunities to shoot fireworks. It's a really fun process.

  4. They're not bad. On some of them seems shutter speed was too slow. What camera do you use?

  5. Just read the tutorial about shooting fireworks on the Digital Photography school. In my opinion, it's horribly wrong.

    I shot some fireworks on New Year's Eve on my dinky point and shoot (look under fireworks on

    First of all - no tripod. ISO 800 -1600. I varied the exposure between Intelligent and Manual - mainly 1/8 -1/30 shutter speed.

    Hope this helps.

  6. I have a point-and-shoot when I just want to stick it in my pocket or on a holster (a Nikon Cool-Pix cheapie).

    These shots were taken with my "good" camera, a Canon 40D with a 17-85 mm lens. Super camera, so I know the bad pictures were me.