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4th of July fireworks

julieojulieo Member
edited July 2015 in general photography
A beautiful night for fireworks and family!
Sony A7ii, 24-70 Zeiss, F11, 125 ISO. Shutter times ranging from 5 to 15 seconds. 
On a couple of the images I held the black of my phone against lens in between burst.


  • MichaelVMichaelV Member
    edited July 2015
    Unfortunately, this is about the best I got from the window of the hotel handheld.  I couldnt open the window exactly so I just did my best.  No tripod.  Just handheld.

    Image and video hosting by TinyPic
  • TrevTrev Moderator
    edited July 2015
    Top shots Julieo, and Michael great for handheld.  :)

    I did a wedding a while back, fireworks but not big star bursts, like Roman Candles.

    Handheld, ISO 2000, f3.5, 50th, using an Lowell ID tungsten light on couple. I did try flash, but it was a bit 'too' much as I wanted to keep guests in front pretty darkish with couple really main subject, plus I think it added to the mood.

  • edited July 2015
    Here's a few of mine few years ago while still shooting Nikon:
     Images are not zoomed in. Taken close up intentionally. Wanted the whole screen filled with bursts




  • RussGRussG Member
    Good work! Here's some help for those of you that haven't been this successful... Full instructions, from a pretty good shooter.

  • Nice photos Julieo! Beautiful. Why did you hold your phone against yr lens for a portion of the exposure, in between bursts? To avoid over exposing?
  • Whoa!!

               What happened to my pics?

  • TrevTrev Moderator

    I don't know what you are looking at, but I can see all of your pics mate. Restart your browser/clear cache or reboot system in that order.

    I just refreshed the Forum and went to this thread and they are all in there.

  • Trev,

             I refreshed it three times and they still were not there...Odd...I even went into Edit, and they were not there as well.

  • TrevTrev Moderator
    Ron, did you actually close the browser and re-open, sometimes that helps. If not, clear browser cache, and or reboot system...

    I can still see them there mate.
  • TrevTrev Moderator
    I shall do an edit on your post and check to see if anything amiss but I don't think so... give me a sec...

  • TrevTrev Moderator
    edited July 2015
    Looks fine to me Ron, but do a reboot, see if that clears it, or first a clear browser cache and let it all rebuild (yeah, a PITA I know).

  • edited July 2015

    Still don't see them in my post, but they are in yours Trev

  • TrevTrev Moderator
    Here is what I can see:

    (Top of the 1st image in your edit dialogue box)

  • julieojulieo Member

     A few times I held the phone in front when the blasts from the fireworks seemed to be going off as singles. My thought was that I could hold the shutter open after the first firework then place phone in front till the next mortar round was sent. I believe there is less ambient that way. Who knows, but while you are sitting there I figured It is good to try different approaches.
  • TrevTrev Moderator

    You are right, I've in the past put the shutter on 'Bulb', and sat there with a piece of black card/cloth to put over the front of the lens and take away when there is action, and sometimes it's been 3-4 minutes, capturing absolutely loads of stuff.

    I prefer the 'base' ISO (100 or 200 on some Nikons) f8.0, lens set to 'Infinity' or if there is any architectural buildings near where the fireworks are, focus on those, but generally Infinity, or if you are really pedantic, wait for the first burst, and with lens on Auto, focus, then switch the button to manual and leave it.

    There are a few approaches but whatever works for you.

    Oh, in post-processing, to get rid of a lot of smoke, if you have Photoshop, duplicate the background layer, and change the blend mode to 'Overlay or try Soft Light/Hard Light/Vivid Light, and maybe Layer Opacity to around 50%, experiment, it really cleans up/removes a lot of the smoke haze while boosting the fireworks brightness/colour.

    Then put a mask on that layer and paint with black brush to remove unwanted sections like buildings/water.

    In that image above that shot I posted had bucket loads of smoke wafting around and I did that little trick and it removed 80% of smoke while boosting saturation/brightness of the actual fireworks.

  • julieojulieo Member
    Thank you, @Trev I am going to try that. Not very polished at Photoshop, but I'll give it a go.
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