Tag Archives: Camera phone

New Year Firework Photography

It’s a well established fact today that since the eve of the new millennium that people simply LOVE fireworks and it goes hand in glove that today technology is king and today, we can all capture more of those precious memories than ever.

Our society today is such that over 80% of the population have either a decent quality camera or a phone with a good camera facility to hand 24 hours a day. That said, fireworks are renowned for being an especially difficult medium to capture on camera which is one of the reasons we always advise customers who visit the website that whilst you can view every product in our range in video format, we will never be able to catch the full effects you actually view with the human eye.

A beautiful firework appeals to our most basic need for light and colour and whether you love them or hate them (and the majority of haters don’t like them because of their noise rather than the effects of the fireworks) getting a decent shot of a firework is in itself is a task not to be underestimated.

The problem is that unless you are supremely lucky the shots you believed were brilliant at Midnight on NYE actually in the cold light of day are a little underwhelming.

The key to taking a great shot is planning. Try the following (as recommended by professional photographers):

USE A TRIPOD OR FIRM SURFACE – set the frame you want to capture and leave it there. Keeping your hand steady for any length of time is not easy and will result in blurry pictures.

SHOOT IN MANUAL MODE – set the camera ISO to LOW (the experts recommend between 50 – 100) set the aperture to F5.6 for a crisp image.

SET SHUTTER SPEED – photography specialist recommend it to be at 2 seconds.

Turn off the FLASH.

Use MANUAL focus.

Try to position yourself upwind – this will reduce the amount of smoke you will have in the shot.

Take as many shots as you can – around 100 will actually give you around 5 absolutely cracking photographs.

Some android devices have a BURST option – engage this if it is a feature of your device.

Try to get some perspective into the frame be that a tree, a building like a church or sizeable house or even a person’s silhouette – it offers a better indication of the size of the burst.

There are some absolutely beautiful shots online, captured by all manner of cameras including some very old camera phone’s (my favourite all time camera-phone was the Samsung E770 – I took some amazing pictures of everything including a lunar eclipse.

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Using your mobile phone to capture great firework photographs

i phone fireworks

Over the last couple of years, the quality of camera phones has improved year on year and today’s mobile phone camera’s are as good, if not better than most standard digital camera’s which are above a couple of years old.

The improvements in the phone camera’s and the available apps mean that you are able to take some really good quality images using special features never before seen on a phone camera.

In order to take the best pictures of fireworks, there are one or two tips to help you to achieve some stunning pictures and here are a few of our suggestions:

• Choose a location which gives the best vantage point for the fireworks but still maintaining a realistic view of surrounding buildings, structures or expanses of water as they enhance the effects and give depth and scale to images taken.

• Either find a place to ensure you or the camera can be held completely still (like against a tree or vehicle) or invest in a tripod. This will help to avoid blurring and blobs on your images.

• Turn off the flash – not needed as you will have enough light in the image itself.

• Ensure that you have cleared as much memory space as possible. You know the ones: blurred pics of the lads night, the one of your dog smiling (no, he was grimacing) or last week’s Sunday roast – you really don’t want to be running out of memory space just as you are going to take pictures of the finale.

• Get the ‘slow shutter cam app’. This allows control of the shutter speed. The recommended setting for fireworks is 5-30 but try a few variations – you may get some odd results but at least you will be getting some practice in.

• Get the ‘fast camera app’. This will enable the camera on the phone to take up to 800 shots per minute instead of having to wait between shots. You may have 799 rubbish images but it’s that one perfect picture you are aiming for.

• Start off shooting in portrait mode for the single bursts changing to landscape for the finale where the sky will be full of bursts.

Happy Snapping 🙂

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