Tag Archives: billericay

December ’13 – Review

December was relatively quiet for pictures, compared to November. The first outing was to the Christmas Fair in Billericay with friends on a photowalk.

Colourful Baubles
Colourful Baubles

A few days later I went for a Tropical Flutter in South Woodham Ferrers to find some butterflies to photograph:

Heliconius Species
Heliconius Species

I managed to finish off my 50@50 2013 project this month with three final pictures, #48 in London, #49 in Chelmsford and #50 in Broadstairs. The last one was found during my stay for Christmas By The Sea in Kent:

Chalk Pebbles Foreground
Chalk Pebbles Foreground

The final outing of the year was a spot of Caching In Colchester with Alistair. This abstract at First Sight arts centre nearly made it for picture of the day:

At Odds
At Odds

I was also pleased to have completed my Photo A Day Treasure Hunt 2013 with the last image on Day #2181.

Please join me in 2014 for more photo chat!

Christmas Fair

It was the Billericay Christmas Fair today, so I met up with some friends for a photowalk around the High Street. As well as the Parade, there were also plenty of market stalls with Christmas themes, street performers and entertainment. I chose the Town Crier for Day #2162 and also managed to chat to Stranger #31 – Tony. Here are some others from my day out:

Stilwalking Christmas Tree Man
Stilwalking Christmas Tree Man
Quack Quack
Quack Quack
Ready To Race
Ready To Race
Horsey Balloons
Horsey Balloons

This study in rust also caught my eye and was a strong contender for picture of the day, but was just pipped by the Town Crier.

Rust Abstract In Blue
Rust Abstract In Blue

Here are the other images from the outing:

 

Fantastic Fireworks

I had a great trip to see the Round Table Fireworks display at Billericay last night. I was very pleased with my pictures this time around, they turned out even better than my last attempt at firework photography in 2011. I was still following my tips for photographing fireworks but I think there wasn’t so much smoke blowing about this year, so it made for better contrast than last time. Here’s a small selection:

Orange Reflection
Orange Reflection
Pink Reflection
Pink Reflection
Big Show
Big Show
Blue Plumes
Blue Plumes
The Finale
The Finale

I chose a sculptural shot for 2nd MoNovember 2013 and these Rockets Reflected for Day #2133. Here are the rest of the images I made:

How To Take… Fireworks

At this time of year photographers love to have a go at taking firework shots. They are not always successful, as it’s a bit more tricky than it looks. So I thought I would give you a few tips for the next time you see some pyrotechnics.

  • Turn off flash – it won’t do you any good
  • Use Manual focus – set the focus on your lens to something which is close to where the fireworks are going off and leave it there
  • Use a tripod – you won’t get sharp images unless you do
  • Use a low ISO setting (eg ISO100) – for the best quality without noise
  • Use a high f-stop – such as f/9, to give you good depth of field
  • Use a wide-angle lens – the widest you’ve got, the better. You can always zoom in a bit when you see where the fireworks are going off
  • Use a cable release – this will help you avoid camera shake when you press the shutter
  • Use live view – if your camera has it, this can help you compose your pictures without having to have your eye glued to the viewfinder – then you can observe the action a little better
  • Use the BULB setting – if your camera has it (or the longest shutter speed if not). This means the shutter is open for as long as you keep your finger on the button. Experiment with different shutter speeds to see what you get

Here’s the technique I used – camera on a tripod, with cable release, full manual focus and full manual exposure – set f/9 and use BULB with a cable release. Watch the fireworks as they go off, try holding the shutter open for different lengths of time to see what you get with the firework trails.

These are some of the shots I took at the local fireworks display yesterday:

1 second exposure
1 second exposure
2 second exposure
2 second exposure
3 second exposure
3 second exposure
5 second exposure
5 second exposure
7 second exposure
7 second exposure