A&P Photographing lightning

Discussion in 'Lifestyle' started by dtfromep, Jun 30, 2005.

  1. dtfromep

    dtfromep New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2003
    Messages:
    1,674
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Saint Paul, MN
    How do you do it? There was incredible lightning during the storm last night, went out to try and capture some, but couldn't catch any/get settings correct.

    Any of you successful with this?
     
  2. Jcolman

    Jcolman OT Supporter

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2002
    Messages:
    43,114
    Likes Received:
    82
    Location:
    east coast
    Plan A. Camera must be on a tripod. Point it at the most likely place lighting will be seen. Use a cable release and set your shutter speed to "B" for bulb. When you press on the cable release, the shutter will remain open until you let go. Wait for a bolt of lighting to strike and press the shutter. You may or may not get lucky. Set your lens apeature to about f/4.

    Plan B. Same as above however open the shutter before a bolt of lighting strikes and keep the shutter open for about 20 seconds or so. Much more and you'll probably over expose the shot. Hope that lighting strikes sometime while the shutter is open. If not, repeat until you get a shot. Set lens apeature to about f/8.

    Lighting pics are much better if you have some interesting foreground or background in the shot, such as building, clouds, etc.
     
  3. dtfromep

    dtfromep New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2003
    Messages:
    1,674
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Saint Paul, MN
    This is pretty much what I attempted, it is mostly chance then? Also, wont f/4 let too much light in when the sky flashes? I was using f/20 ish with crappy results.
     
  4. Jcolman

    Jcolman OT Supporter

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2002
    Messages:
    43,114
    Likes Received:
    82
    Location:
    east coast
    Your exposure really depends on the film stock or the sensativity setting on your digital camera. Exposure also depends on the ambiant light conditions. I've shot 30 sec exposures at f/4 before with good results but again it all depends on the available light. Use f/4 or 5.6 as a starting point and go from there.
     
  5. So I'm assuming you need similar settings for fireworks then right?
     

Share This Page