Lightning & Digital Photography

Awesome Beauty

Photographers, beginners & pros would more than likely want to be camera ready for lightning shots like this video portrays. This will make your day. Check it out, then read Amy Renfrey’s tips on digital photography and lightning.

The power of Lightning
Combined with Digital Photography
By Amy Renfrey

Have you ever noticed that in digital photography there always seems to be photos of fork lightening that some clever photography enthusiast has mastered? The fact is that digital photography is a challenge and as soon as we develop the interest in digital photography we are challenging ourselves from the start. And a real challenge in digital photography is fast moving subjects. And when it comes to either traditional or digital photography catching electrifying fork lightening just is too much of a enticement to see if we can “win” the challenge.

So how do we apply our digital photography to sharp, brilliant streaks of colour over our images? Getting great shots of forked lightening is not as difficult as you would think, or have been led to believe.

As a digital photography teacher I can honestly say that the first thing people do is buy way to much equipment for this exercise. You really just need a few simple things. A camera and a tripod are the main things.

The main challenge in digital photography when taking lightening shots is where to position yourself. I’ve had many a frustrating time, in the early days of my photography, trying to get the best angle, the best position only to find I had the camera pointed at completely the wrong part of the sky. And some of my digital photography lightening exposures were all wrong. I was thinking it was as hard as trying to predict a horse race with a crystal ball until I worked out the logic of it all and it started to become a lot of fun.

The first thing to keep in mind is to make sure your shutter is open. Lightening is sharp, short and sweet. Its important to get the most out of the long, open shutter speed by leaving it open for a long time. You can do this with confidence on a really black night such as being in the country on a dark night without any city lights or too many clouds around for the light to bounce off. In the country you may have the freedom to leave the shutter open for as long as 60 seconds.

However in the city it’s a bit different. What tends to happen is that due to other light in the atmosphere, light from buildings, streets and cars you can see this scene turns out much brighter on a 60 second shutter speed.

A quick way to get great lightening shots is to find a good place to set up where you know lightening is either happening or is about to happen. Take your tripod, camera and shutter release cable. The great thing about a shutter release cable is that once the lightening has struck there is no need to keep the shutter open and you can simply press it and the shutter will close.

Try setting your aperture to about an f 8 or so and leaving the shutter open from anywhere between 10 seconds to 60 seconds. (Setting B). Set your IS0 at 100, set the focus to infinity and wait.

Digital Photography Safety
It’s a good idea, any time in digital photography, not to jeopardize your safety. Digital photography is intensely fun and incredibly educational and creative, but it’s not worth risking your life for. As much as it’s a beautiful spectacle, its much more wise to stay well away from lightening. It’s carrying enough energy to give your house power for two months solid, so be careful!

As always, to your success,

Amy Renfrey

Digital Photography Success
Learn to take stunning photos with bold color & super sharp clarity

Make sure to check out Amy’s link above.

Until we meet again,

To your success,
The Photo-Genie


~ by Marlene on July 4, 2008.

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