Firework Photography Tips

Last Saturday was Guy Fawkes night, celebrated in the UK but also in New Zealand. Despite the fact that I should have been doing my diploma work I went out and took some images of the fireworks. I didn’t get very close to the fireworks unfortunately so a 200mm lens had to be used and then a fair bit of cropping. Not ideal but the images came out not too badly.

Some tips for getting firework shots:

  • Use a tripod, you need longer exposures to capture the fireworks.
  • Shoot in manual mode.
  • Prefocus where you expect the fireworks.
  • Keep your ISO low to capture the best detail and colour.
  • Try shooting in build mode with a cable release.
  • Try different lengths of exposure, from a couple of seconds up.
  • Have fun!


This was a long exposure (about 60s)


Much shorter exposure, about 4s


And 8s for this

One of my favourite shots was taken before the fireworks started, just looking out to sea.


Very simple with the sea smoothed out with a 30s exposure.


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