What you need:
2. Shutter release
3. DSLR or camera with a long shutter speed
4. Optional: ND Filter
5. Optional: Lens with zoom and High aperture
Step by Step Instructions:
1. Location, Location, Location
Here’s the truth: pictures of only fireworks are just plain boring. As sparkly as those beautiful streaks are, they serve their best purpose highlighting a subject. In most Magic Kingdom firework photos, the subject is Cinderella Castle. But getting creative with your subject and composition will take your photos to the next level. Just remember, you’re taking pictures of Disney World with fireworks in the background. Experiment with the rule of thirds, or leading lines, and brush up on your composition skills before your trip.
1. Set up your tripod
Once you find your spot, set up your tripod and get your composition set.
2. Manual Focus
Change the setting on your lens to manual focus, and zoom out to the infinity sign, or focus on your subject. This will keep your camera from trying to focus in the dark.
Set your ISO to 100. This will give you the least amount of noise and allow for long shutter speeds
4. Shutter Speed
Set your shutter speed anywhere longer than 5 seconds. You want to give each exposure enough time to capture multiple fireworks. I recommend starting at 15 seconds, and adjusting from there.
6. Shutter Release
Connect your shutter release and change the settings on your camera to use the shutter release. Then stand back, relax, and wait for the show to start.
Make sure that you time your shutter releases appropriately. If you start too early, your photo might start processing right when it reaches the part you wanted to photograph. The longer the shutter speed, the longer it will take in-between shots to process the photo. There’s a lot of trial-and-error in this step, so just be patient with it.
Once you get home, you’ll want to edit your photos. We use Lightroom for all our post-processing work, and I would recommend it if you want to make the investment and don’t need all the tools that come with photoshop.
And last but not least, don’t forget to enjoy yourself! Remember: you’re on vacation, so don’t let any camera frustrations get in the way of the magic in Disney World. We hope you found this helpful, and would love to see your photos if you implement any of our tips. If you have any questions about gear, or want to dig into the technical side a little more, just leave us a comment, and we’ll help you out. And as you’re standing on Main Street with the glow of fireworks all around you, don’t ever forget to believe in your wishes, for they are the magic in the world.