Day 164 – Canada Day Fireworks   4 comments

Calgary FireworksThis past weekend, the family and I headed down to Calgary to visit friends. I was pretty keen to see the fireworks which were going to be at dusk in Calgary. If you can believe it, dusk means the fireworks started at 11pm. Yes, it gets dark late here.

It was my first time in Calgary and I was alone in my interest in catching the fireworks so I headed out to find the fireworks on my own.

In Calgary, they do their fireworks show right in the heart of the city off the top of something called the Municipal Building – I think it’s city hall. The location means a very crowded downtown and not just with cars. There aren’t many great vantage points from which to view the fireworks given the close confines of the downtown core. Everyone is crowded in cheek-to-jowl. I was glad it was too late for the kids to join me.

With the crowds, it turns out that I should have left my tripod at home with the kids. There was no way I was getting it set up. That’s okay though, I actually like taking long, handheld shots of fireworks. Despite all the articles published lately advising how best to shoot fireworks (tripod, shutter release, pre-focus, f11-f16) my preferred approach is to shoot handheld at a low ISO and use long exposures of between 1 and 4s. Sure, the camera moves, but I like it that way. If I can squeeze some crowds in the shots I get the motion of the people and it adds some great mood to the images.

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4 responses to “Day 164 – Canada Day Fireworks

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  1. I love the effect.

  2. Hi Mike, first of all, glad to see you back, i was getting worried, no posts for long time!
    Second you have a good point there, Tripods and such like on such big occasions are more trouble than they´re worth, anyway, i don´t think this shot could have been improved much with a tripod-it´s perfect! I shan´t be embarrassed about putting my handheld firework pics on wordpress in the future!
    I was looking at all those blogs about “How to” fourth of july stuff myself-Ad Nauseam,rules are definately made to be broken!
    Great work,well done!

  3. Aah, now that´s interesting,zooming in thru the exposure,must give that ago,let you know how i get on!

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