Focus on Fireworks

Green Hornet
Green Hornet meets the Pink Panther

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This year for the Fourth of July fireworks I tried a new technique that I read about in several various posts around the web. The basic premise is to use focus to create blur around a fireworks explosion. I set my focus at just short of infinity and then refocused after tripping the shutter. I used shutter speeds of 1 and 2 seconds at f5.6 and f8 to experiment with this technique.

Rhapsody in Blue and Green
Rhapsody in Blue and Green

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Technicolor Dreamboat
Technicolor Dreamboat

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Pink and Green Nucleus
Pink and Green Nucleus

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Flaming Flower
Flaming Flower

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A Star is Born.
A Star is Born.

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Cosmic Dust
Cosmic Dust

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BOOM!
BOOM!

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I finished all the images in Aperture 3 and really cranked up the sharpening both in the RAW file and in the finished image. I also played around a lot with the Saturation, Luminance and Range sliders in the individual color channels to intensify the colors.

All in all I am better satisfied with these fireworks images than any I have attempted in the past. I think I’ll work on refining the technique the next time a fireworks opportunity presents itself.

13 thoughts on “Focus on Fireworks

  1. absolutely beautiful! Love them. They look like flowers. You did a great capture of them. Thanks for sharing. Reba

  2. Wow, great! Quite honestly, I get tired of fireworks photos because they all tend to look alike, but now you’ve developed something out of the ordinary. Can’t wait to see more!

    1. Thanks Nancy. I have to say I didn’t come up with the idea I just tried applying the technique. I did it because fireworks are quite often cliched and uninteresting subject matter.

  3. I used the same technique this year with similar results! I especially like cosmic dust! Beautiful.

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