Fire in the Sky: Fireworks Photography

Fireworks photography is a lot of fun.  I first tried it a few years ago and now I always enjoy going to our local celebration and shooting some photos. For a small town, we have some great fireworks put on by the fire department. I know there are lots of tutorials out there on how to take fireworks photos, but here is a short list of what works best for me.

  • Use a tripod – this is a must in order to get sharp photos!
  • Set your camera on manual focus and set the focus to infinity.
  • Use manual exposure mode:  I set the shutter speed to the bulb setting, ISO to the lowest possible setting, and aperture to around f/10 to start with, adjusting as necessary if fireworks are over or underexposed.
  • Don’t zoom in too far – it’s hard to predict exactly where the fireworks are going to explode in the sky, and it’s better to crop later than cut off part of the firework.
  • If you are in an interesting location, include some of the surroundings with the first shots at dusk before it is completely dark.

Nikon D90 w/ Nikon 18-200@ 18mm, f/10, 2.6s, ISO 100

Nikon D90 w/ Nikon 18-200@ 18mm, f/11, 3.0s, ISO 100

Nikon D90 w/ Nikon 18-200@ 18mm, f/11, 2.5s, ISO 100

Nikon D90 w/ Nikon 18-200@ 18mm, f/10, 3.0s, ISO 100

I have tons of fireworks photos from last night, so if I don’t come up with anything else, I may post more later for the weekly photo challenge.  I’ll just have to see what I come up with.


About amcnabb3

I’m a high school math teacher who loves teaching and photography.

Posted on July 3, 2011, in Holiday and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.

  1. It can’t get no better than this! Perfect!

  2. Really nice captures! Well done.

  3. thirdhandart

    Beautiful, professional quality photos!

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