What is Lightning Photography?
Lightning photography is a specialized process that captures the split second strikes in which electrically charged clouds in the atmosphere emit high voltage strikes onto the ground or onto other clouds.Though lightning is a particularly common phenomenon overall, it is one of the most elusive phenomena to be captured by a camera. That is why lightning photography is a spectacular way to take impactful photos photos of the outdoors and an unusual harsh environment.
The fact that lightning strikes only take a few split seconds make them quite hard to catch. However, with the right planning, the use of weather forecasts, finding a good and safe location, and with the help of efficient gear, being able to take lightning photos that represent such a marvelous natural phenomenon especially when taken with breathtaking or iconic landscapes can definitely give outstanding results. Lightning photos are sure to make significant impact when captured successfully.
Equipment For Photographing Lightning
Photographing lightning requires not just skill and knowledge but also a huge amount of luck. Lightning has a significant degree of unpredictability that no one can absolutely prepare for. Proper lightning photography equipment can increase chances of capturing lightning successfully. First is a camera with manual functions. There is a limited range of exposure settings that would allow one to capture lightning properly and that is why you should have full control of the camera’s functions. That includes shutter speed, ISO, aperture, and for the sake of good composition and framing, also focal length.
Another crucial lightning photo equipment would be a good and sturdy tripod. Lightning photos require a few seconds of exposure that can not be done handheld so you would need a tripod to keep the camera steady and free of any movement that would ruin the shot. For a more efficient experience, a lightning camera trigger is a device that detects huge flashes of light and triggers the camera to start and exposure. This lightning trigger would significantly increase your chances of capturing lightning and significantly reduce wasted exposures.
Choosing a Location for Lightning Photography
Location is one of the most crucial aspects of this task. Your lightning photography location should allow you to be able to see the storm from a close distance while also remaining relatively safe. In terms of having visual access to lightning, it is good to consult lightning strike maps and lightning trackers to be able to find a suitable position to shoot. A lightning app helps predict areas where there would be a storm with significant electrical activity. Through predictive lightning maps, it would be possible to narrow down the specific area where it would be best to position your camera.
Your vantage point has to have a good wide view of the scene. Other tools like a lightning strike map and a lightning tracker can further specify your best vantage point. Lightning strikes often move along as the wind blows the storm clouds and it would be best to be able to capture that in one frame or at least be able to pan with the movement. Distance from the storm is crucial as well. The key is to be far enough to remain safe from the storm but not too far that clouds and rain would impede your view.
How to take Perfect Lightning Photos? Lightning Photography Settings
This kind of photography requires a precise parameter of Lightning Photography settings. The goal of these settings is to come up with a balanced exposure while keeping the lightning strikes and the surrounding environment clear and detailed. Lightning only happens for about half a second to a little over a second in general so knowing how to shoot lightning is crucial.
Given the unpredictability of this, it is possible to shoot a little longer than the said time. However, it is important not to make your exposure time too long that the luminosity of the background would overwrite and erase the lightning strikes. The safest limit is to keep your shutter speed around 4 to 8 seconds. ISO and aperture can vary depending on light condition and can be used to compensate for the strict parameters of shutter speed. However, when possible the lowest ISO is preferred to keep the shot as free from noise as possible, and the aperture around f/8 to f/11 to keep most if not the entire frame in focus and detailed.
Tips for Lightning Photography? How to make it easier?
Lightning photography involves a lot of planning, preparation, and a huge amount of luck. These lightning photography tips should help you prepare. With proper gear and finding the right position and timing, you can take better lightning photographs and infuse them with stunning landscapes and outdoor scenes. The key to properly executing such an unpredictable process is mastering long exposure techniques as much as you can. By being able to practice long exposure, a photographer learns to adapt to the most drastic changes in the lightning environment and be able to adjust with the proper settings as it happens.
Having the right tools for these lightning photography tricks and properly getting to know your tools makes a world of difference as well. With mastery of manipulating your camera, adjusting your support gear, and perfect use of you camera trigger, you stop losing precious time and exposures from tinkering too much with your camera. With the added benefit of a good lightning trigger, the process becomes pretty much automated once you start it and it makes a lot of difference.
Easiest Way of Capturing Lightning Strikes
How to use the Lightning Mode on MIOPS Smart+
What is MIOPS Smart+ and Why Should We Use it?
The MIOPS Smart+ camera trigger is a brilliantly designed device that adds intelligent functions to your camera. It offers unique modes and sensors that revolutionize how you do photography and makes all your specialized processes simpler and often, automatic. The MIOPS Smart+ camera remote functions in perfect harmony with the MIOPS Mobile app that turns your smartphone into your wireless remote and allows you to control it for a variety of long exposure and remote triggering functions.
Moreover, this smart trigger comes with a variety of sensors to help you capture the most elusive split second moments. The light sensor sets off with flashes of light that triggers the camera in the occurrence of lightning. The sound camera trigger starts an exposure immediately following loud bursts of sounds perfect for special effects photography, and the laser sensor automatically triggers the camera when an object crosses its path making it perfect for capturing very fast movements across the frame.