Site icon enframe photography and design

Tutorial: Photographing Fireworks

photographing fireworks

With 4th of July and other summer celebrations around the corner, I thought it would be a good time for a little tutorial on how to photograph fireworks.  Last year, I watched a two-hour Creative Live class with John Cornicello that went over pretty much everything you need to know to photograph a fireworks display.

This tutorial is basically a summary of his information with a bit of my own experience thrown in and a few of my photos from last 4th of July . . .

What You’ll Need: 


Check out the location you’ll be shooting from before it gets dark so you’ll know if there will be any obstructions  and then pick your spot accordingly… Will you be watching the display from an awesome location (like fireworks over the water or a bridge or some local hot spot and you want to capture some of that context along with the fireworks) Or will you be watching nearby fireworks from your driveway like I was last year and just want to isolate them in the sky? What could be in your shot that you don’t want to see? (telephone poles or wires, trees you don’t want to see, tops of insignificant buildings . . . ) What could be there that you might want to pick up along with the display to give some context? (crowds watching the show, easily identifiable buildings or landmarks/monuments) check out your location before it gets too dark and figure out where you’ll shoot from and the best place for you to stand; if possible set up your tripod and leave it there.

Camera Settings: 

I’ll say that last part again because I think it might be the most important and the most fun: EXPERIMENT! that’s how you get fun and unique shots. Take a few “perfect” shots and then play around and see what happens!

A Few More Tips:

Camera Phone or Point and Shoot?

Most of this still applies and you can still get some fun shots. Though you may not be able to choose your aperture and shutter speed, you still need a steady surface (love the gorillapod for point and shoots) and should not use your flash. Scouting the location ahead of time will be even more important because you’ll have a wider shot.

No matter what tool you’ll be using to capture your next fireworks display, take lots of shots, try new things, and most importantly HAVE FUN! 

connect with  [en]frame photography on twitter,  Facebook,  instagram and/or Pinterest

*amazon links above are affiliate links

Exit mobile version