How to Photograph Lightning

April 21, 2010 · 1 comment

in Inspiration,Scapes,Travel,Tutorials

Tips for photographing lightning:

1. Set you camera on a tripod, or any steady surface.

2. You’ll need to use a long shutter speed, I’ve found that 25 – 30 seconds works well, but this will depend on your cameras ability to manage noise on slow shutter speeds.

3. Compose your shot with the horizon towards the bottom of the frame. It’ll look like a lot of nothingness, but once the lightning starts the frame will look a lot more interesting.

4. Remember the Rule of Thirds, and try to include a point of interest, such as a building or a natural element, like a large tree. Reference points like these show the viewer the size and scale of the storm.

5. Once you’ve focused the shot, switch to manual focus and leave it there so that you don’t need to refocus after every shot.

6. Be patient. You’ll probably end up with a lot of empty frames, but if you’re shooting digital you can’t really complain!

7. Once you’ve downloaded your images, use Photoshop or stacking software to combine multiple lightning strikes onto the same image.

Here’s one of my own lightning images which I shot from my office window one evening:

Lightning

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Erika April 26, 2010 at 4:07 pm

Awesome shot!

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