Photographing Lightning

Photographing Lightning


Call me silly, but I’m super excited to have finally captured my first lightning photos. These were taken on a whim. It was storming a few nights ago as I was getting ready for bed so I decided sleep could wait. Since I hadn’t prepared in advance, it took me almost the entire time to figure out how to get to the BULB setting on my camera. If you didn’t know already, the BULB setting simply keeps the shutter open for as long as the shutter button is pressed which allows for exposures longer than 30 seconds.



Apparently, in the two and half years I’ve owned this particular camera, I’ve never used that function. As a result, most of my photos are 30 second exposures that only contain one or two lightning strikes at most. I really don’t recommend my method of fiddling around in the dark and missing cool shots in the process. Once I finally figured out how to reach BULB, the storm had already moved far enough away that I wasn’t going to get any good pictures. Next time I’ll get it set up much faster.



The other DSLR I had went to BULB right after 30 seconds. So when I couldn’t go past 30 seconds I was a bit lost. Turns out, on the Canon 6D, the BULB setting is only available when you turn the dial to BULB mode. Go figure. It doesn’t really warrant its own special place on the dial in my non-expert opinion, but at least I got it figured out.



The picture above is definitely one of my favorites. I had finally figured out my camera and this shot was 90 seconds long. It captured multiple lightning strikes, but only one that hit the ground. I’m just in love with how beautifully the mountains are lit up.



I probably should have focused more to the right, but every time I did, there would be tons of lightning to the left and center. I think the best bet may be to just pick a direction and keep it. It can be hard though when you’re watching lots of lighting happen where your camera isn’t. A better location would have been nice too. I was just set up in my studio, taking pictures out of the open window. Again, if I had planned, I could have driven somewhere with fewer trees and buildings to impede the view.



You can call me obsessed (my husband does) about Game of Thrones. If you haven’t yet watch the season 7 finally, beware of spoilers in the following text. The season finale last night was pretty awesome. My favorite moment from the entire episode was a line from Sansa: “I may be a slow learner, but I do learn.” Ugh, FINALLY! I’m not going to lie, I had absolutely zero faith in her wising up. She has been a pretty consistent idiot. Something horrible was going to happen and Littlefinger would go sniggering off like he always does. I’m honestly a little disappointed he didn’t have one last card up his sleeve. He is the master manipulator after all; “chaos is a ladder” and such. It pains me that Jon & Dani blindly accepted Cersei’s word. They can’t all be that dumb right? One of them must realize that Cersei is a madwoman and can’t be trusted. Tyrion of all people should know this. They shouldn’t need Jamie ditching her and telling them about her deceit to see it. Because surely Jamie was on his way to join the other side right? Why else would he abandon his fancy armor to ride off into the snowstorm. Even though said armor would be handy to have in the war to come. Fictional rich people are so impractical. And the final scene with the dragon… yup, still screwed.

4 thoughts on “Photographing Lightning”

  • Love these. Especially the last one with the lightening illuninating color in the trees. The way it shows the color is like silver and gold. Metallic! I’m clapping for you.

  • These are amazing! I love a thunderstorm, mainly because I’m always hoping for the lightning 🙂 Never managed to get a shot without cheating (read: film and then screenshot some stills later), but then again, never knew about a BULB setting. The more you know!

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