Thursday, January 3, 2013

Brand New Year

Happy New Year 2013 to all my blog readers =)

This time round, I'm determined to try taking pictures of fireworks celebrations. Didn't quite bother doing so for the previous years partly because I wasn't well equipped. Didn't have a tripod. Also, wasn't really into landscapes/nightscapes and all, but I was still amazed at all those shots you see online.

Met up a few friends (who are lowyat forumers) to shoot the fireworks display together. We decided that it was best to shoot at less popular places as it will be really packed with people (KLCC). Not to mention the enourmous jam you have to endure on your way back home. You might also run into some party goers, some of them equipped with spray cans!

So, it was decided to be at 1Utama, just a stone's throw away from the Curve. The fireworks would be fired just above The Curve building according to past events. We were at the 1Utama car park, 5th level, a great spot, to capture the entire scene.

From left: Myself, Legend, Melvin and Kien Seng. Small group, partly because it was a last minute meet up.
As this would be my first time shooting fireworks, I wasn't really familiar with the timing. I knew that your camera had to be set to bulb mode, Aperture around f/8 to f/11 (just make sure that your overall exposure for the entire image has to be more than 4-5 seconds), ISO set to ISO100. Use remote trigger, for the record, I'm using an Aperture Flash trigger that comes with a wireless remote as well.

Thanks to the guys for giving me some tips regarding the shoot. What I know is, you have to keep on firing your shots with about 1-2 seconds interval from the next shot. If you want to see the trajectory of the firework firing up to the air, make sure you open the shutter when you see it shooting up. When to close the shutter? When it explodes and starts to subside, immediately close the shutter. You can have varying effects while playing with shutter speed. I myself used a 1-2 seconds Shutter Speed for each firework. I did have a tendency of prolonging the shutter open because there were continous fireworks exploding at the same time, but the result wasn't really pleasing. It was mostly overexposed and the formation of fireworks wasn't nice. It was mostly blurry. What you want to achieve is tact sharp fireworks.

And ohh I forgot to mention, when I was preparing for the shoot, I accidentally hit one of my tripod legs, causing the tripod to fall sideways down with my camera mounted on! I was in total shock when it happened, couldn't react fast enough to prevent it falling. I was quite speechless, even my friend was a lot more frightened than me lol.

However, fortunately, my camera was safe. Thanks to the lens hood!!

Thank God for the lens hood. The lens good broke as a result of the impact (from 6 feet high!!) and luckily my lens wasn't broken or anything. Even my lens wasn't damaged (I hope the internals are fine, AF seems to be working and all). Without the lens hood, I think my lens would have broken and who knows what might happen to my camera.

Anyway! We proceeded with the shoot. Kept spamming the shutter one after another. There was one time my card was too busy writting data into the card and it took like 15 seconds. I was like FML LOL

Got back home, epic tired, straight away into the editing room. Took me a good 3-4 hours to edit and combine multiple exposures and I got this:

 Quite satisfied with the result actually, especially when this is my first time shooting fireworks.

Might get myself a wired remote trigger to reduce lag time and a bunch of other things. Will compile a list of things to buy for the new year in my next blog post LOL

With that said, Happy New Year!

View my flickr photo collection here:
View my 500px photo collection (mostly landscapes only):


  1. I guess it right, which u are the one at the left. U can get this result after editing? Not only the simple shoot?

    1. What did you guess? :D Yes, I'm the person on the left (in the group pic)

      Fireworks were merged into a single picture :)