New Year is a great time to photograph fireworks displays, but there are usually many other occasions during the year when you can capture them. These are a few tips that may help you get some sharp, interesting, and colorful shots.
Fireworks usually emit quite a bit of light. A small to mid-range aperture typically works well and you might want to try anything between f/8 and f/16.
It’s good to have a long exposure if possible. A good idea is to use a mode or camera that keeps the shutter open for as long as you hold it down. This can also be done by remote shutter release. All you have to do is open the shutter when the firework is ready to go off and let go once it’s finished exploding. This is usually a few seconds. Of course, you can always experiment with different speeds.
To get the cleanest shots a low ISO such as 100 is the best.
Remember to turn the flash off as it won’t have any impact on the photos and it will send a signal to the camera that a short exposure is only needed.
It’s generally better to use the manual focus and exposure modes as it’s hard to auto focus in low light. When you’re in focus you shouldn’t have to change it during the fireworks show, especially with a small aperture as it will increase the depth of field.
Make sure to check the images early on to make sure they’re fine and do so every once in a while. Adding people, landmarks, buildings, and/or wider perspectives can also result in some interesting fireworks shots.