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Thread: First attempt at fireworks - Knoxville Boomsday 2012

  1. #1
    cliffmccartney's Avatar
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    Cliff McCartney

    First attempt at fireworks - Knoxville Boomsday 2012

    Took these shots at the Knoxville Boomsday fireworks show Sunday 9/2/2012. This is my first attempt at shooting fireworks. I basically followed Joe McNally's recommendations (at least I tried to). #1 is actually the last shot I took. It started pouring rain, and I had to put a baggie over the camera and grab the tripod and run for cover. I got soaked, but my gear is ok

    Directly below the fireworks is the campus of the University of Tennessee and the (under repair) Henley Bridge.

    Nikon D7000, 18-105mm f/3.5-5.6

    #1
    First attempt at fireworks - Knoxville Boomsday 2012
    f/14, bulb mode (7.5 seconds), 18mm

    #2
    First attempt at fireworks - Knoxville Boomsday 2012
    f/14, bulb mode (9.4 seconds), 18mm

    #3
    First attempt at fireworks - Knoxville Boomsday 2012
    f/14, bulb mode (6.3 seconds), 18mm

    These are 3 of a gallery of 10. C&C most welcome.

    Thanks for viewing!!

    Cliff

  2. #2
    dje's Avatar
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    Dave Ellis

    Re: First attempt at fireworks - Knoxville Boomsday 2012

    Cliff they look good to me, good clarity and colour. I've never tried this sort of photography before but we do have a laser light show coming up. I must have a look at that Joe McNally link.

    Well done
    Dave

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    RockNGoalStar's Avatar
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    Tommy

    Re: First attempt at fireworks - Knoxville Boomsday 2012

    I agree, they look pretty good to me too!

    One thing I would say is that, with fireworks, if you want to get them perfect you need to nail it in the first few shots. After that the smoke typically takes over and spoils the shot.

    You have nice foreground interest and the fireworks look great, but the smoke is somewhat annoying. Maybe it's just me! For a first attempt these are fantastic and I'm sure you learnt a great deal from this experience. Shooting fireworks is great fun isn't it?!

  4. #4
    cliffmccartney's Avatar
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    Re: First attempt at fireworks - Knoxville Boomsday 2012

    Thanks Dave and Tommy.

    I had a blast shooting these, and I can't wait to do my next set, whenever that might be. I learned a lot.

    (1) Prepare, prepare, prepare - get there early and get a good spot. Get all the tripod set up, settings locked in, and camera on the tripod about 30 minutes before start.

    (2) Find out for sure where the fireworks will shoot off, and where they will show up. I was misinformed this time. I was told that they would be firing a good distance to the right of where they actually were. I wasted the first few minutes getting the camera re-set up. If you look closely, you can see the corner of a building that I had to shoot around.

    (3) Tommy - you nailed it. You need to get your good shots early. My sky filled up with smoke in a real hurry. At that point I had a choice - shoot with the smoke or don't shoot at all. The fireworks were coming so fast there was no time at all to let the smoke clear. There was no delay between launches at all. I played around in PP with darkening the sky to minimize the smoke, but I sacrificed the foreground and city lights below. Maybe if I knew more about Photoshop I could make the shots better.

    (4) Back to preparation - be ready for anything. We had a short rain shower before the show, then the skies cleared. When the rain came, it went from a few drops to pouring. I barely had time to get my gear covered up and moved.

    I'm hooked though - looking very forward to the next opportunity.

    Cliff

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