View Full Version : Took a cool lightning picture
07-14-2004, 06:54 AM
I decided to try to get some cool lightning pics during a storm, but it's quite difficult to time things properly... I had to take 100+ pictures to get 2 good ones.
Anyway, I thought I'd share, since I really like this one (http://home.comcast.net/~senorbeef/img_1095.jpg).
That was one of the ones I took with a 15 second shutter - a composite shot, of sorts, possibly combining more than one strike. What's the technical term for a long exposure shot like that?
Anyway, given that I was handholding, the amount of blur was pretty low. Then again, there was only a lot of light during quick flashes. What's that affect on the bottom? The orange blurs that sort of look like flames - effect of the odd lighting of the lightning?
This one (http://home.comcast.net/~senorbeef/img_1105.JPG) looks more like a 'composite' shot but it's actually only a 2 second shutter.
07-14-2004, 06:56 AM
Forgot to ask: Is that an optical illusion, or is the lightning just a few hundred yards away in the first pic?
07-14-2004, 07:12 AM
Cool pics SenorBeef. I like to watch lightning. Especially from a waaaaaay safe distance. The orange stuff looks like maybe light reflecting off the water. It's hard for me to judge how close lightning is except when it does stuff like hit the water in my pool :eek: but the first pic looks like the lightning was pretty close to ya when you snapped the pic.
07-14-2004, 07:12 AM
I don't know the answer to any of your questions but those are cool pictures.
07-14-2004, 07:19 AM
The red stuff is "ghosting" from when I twitched a bit.. generated from the railings, I think. I was hand holding a 15 second exposure, which can cause a decent bit of blurriness.
Also, realizing that those are huge and some browsers don't resize, I made some smaller versions here (http://home.comcast.net/~senorbeef/Img_1095-800x600.jpg) and here (http://home.comcast.net/~senorbeef/Img_1105-800x600.jpg).
07-14-2004, 07:21 AM
Very cool pictures. I'd love to get some lightning pictures, but I always chicken out. I stand and look at the lightning, and then I start imagining the lightning coming down and hitting me - sends me running indoors every time.
But when you get pictures like this, I'm happy someone has the guts to do it. Very interesting!
07-14-2004, 08:05 AM
That second one looks like the waterspout from Hell. Way cool pics.
Have you ever considered a tripod and one of those long bendy attachments that allow you to take the pic without holding the camera? I don't know what they're called but it's essentially a rubber tube with a thumb button at one end and a little metal rod at the other that will open the shutter when the button is pressed.
07-14-2004, 08:08 AM
Yeah I may get a tripod and umbrella to get more pics from storms.. it was a pretty spontaneous thing tonight.
Speaking of which - a lot of water droplets got on my lens, and I don't really have one of those extra fine lint free cloths. I tried to air-dry the lens using a fan - is that sufficient, is there something else I should do to make sure the lens is clean?
07-14-2004, 08:37 AM
Cool pictures, SenorBeef! Thanks for sharing.
Since I don't have a camera that allows me to do time exposures I videotape lightning storms. If I catch a good strike I capture the frame and make an image from this. The resolution isn't as good as what a film or digital camera can produce but I've gotten some decent captures from my lightning videos.
07-14-2004, 10:03 AM
Too bad you weren't using a tripod on these, but good nonetheless. You can clone out the dust specks from your scanner (or whatever is causing the white spots) with any PS-type program. I like the second shot, particularly when you up the saturation a bit (I played with it a bit, hope you don't mind).
07-14-2004, 11:23 AM
The second one looks a bit like a mushroom cloud, I think.
Very cool. I applaud.
07-14-2004, 12:45 PM
Pretty cool! The first one is awesome. Thanks for sharing.
07-14-2004, 01:07 PM
What's the technical term for a long exposure shot like that?
It used to be called a "bulb" exposure, because you'd use the Bulb setting on the shutter speed dial. It was called that because the old-fasioned flashbulbs once needed to be manually triggered or ignited (think flash powder), so you'd set your shutter speed to B, press the shutter release button, trigger the flash, then let go of the shutter release. Back then, films were pretty slow (this is turn-of-the-century stuff here), so ambient light had little effect, even with a long shutter time. These days, it's usually called a time exposure.
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