How To Shoot Fireworks

Just in time for all the big fireworks this weekend for Independence Day, here’s your go to tips for taking awesome firework photos with your DSLR camera and your iphone! It’s fun for fireworks and sparklers too.

How to photograph Fireworks via

Here’s how for a DSLR camera:

1. You need to use a tripod or a stable solid service that won’t move (don’t trust yourself to be that steady.)
2. Slow Shutter Speed – 20-30 seconds, Aperture around F8, with a low ISO.
3. Use a wide angle lens like: 12-18 mm. (I just used my kit lens and set it to 18mm.)

When you’re ready to take a photo, click the shutter release button and wait. It’ll be awhile before it clicks, and when it does, check your screen and see how the exposure is. If it’s too bright, adjust the aperture and make it smaller (higher number.) You want to leave your shutter speed really slow, because that will pick up all the trails and wonderful movement of the fireworks. And you want to keep your ISO low so your photos won’t be grainy.

For iPhone photography use the Slow Shutter App.

We took our tripod with us on a trip to Disneyland and took some fun photos of the fireworks and some while we were there on Main street. We stood still in the crowd. I love how they all look a blur and we’re in focus. I really like how they turned out. The trick is staying very still. I used all the same tips that I listed above to shoot fireworks.

You should try these tips out this weekend, you might even catch Tinkerbell in flight. 😉

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  1. Nichole says

    I have been reading your blog for a couple of weeks now and don't think I have left a comment yet. So I just wanted to tell you that I love love LOVE your crowd pictures where they are a blur. I am an aspiring photographer and love taking pictures so you can be sure I will be trying this technique soon!

  2. Tiffany says

    your pics turned out great! My hub and I were just talking about a crowd blur picture. very cool!

  3. Christi says

    LOVE this! (Also, love your blog!) This idea totally reminds me of the movie A Lot Like Love. If you haven't seen it, then you must. Very cute.

  4. Lacey Jane says

    Wow- we did have (almost) the exact trip! Too bad we didn't see you at Disneyland!

    And these photos are awesome! I was too lazy to carry around my camera, but now I'm wishing I did after looking at these amazing photos!

  5. Omgirl says

    Very interesting stuff. I got out my very non-amazing digital camera to see how many of those things it would let me adjust. It will let me adjust aperature and shutter speed. I haven't found ISO yet. And the slowest shutter speed I can get is 15 seconds. I'm also not sure how to adjust the angle on this camera since it is just a built-in lense. It says it goes 5.8mm to 29mm, but I'm not sure if that's true. Any thoughts???

  6. bethany says

    nice work!! i never have the tolerance to carry around my tripod, i am so impressed! you have inspired me! :)

  7. Diane says

    I like in your pictures it shows people but not all their faces and not clearly, like the subjects. Great idea.

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