Independence Day brings fireworks. With the fireworks comes the obsessive perfectionist in me.
Because of the sudden appearance and disappearance, along with the various colors and shapes, no two photographs are alike. While most other people are looking up at the sky with their own two eyes, I’ve got a camera lens aimed at whatever direction a firework flies.
I had two opportunities this past weekend to shoot some fireworks shows in Wisconsin. I always try to find a different shot, a different style to bring out the color that flashes in the night for a brief moment. For example, in 2011, it was the first time I caught the silhouettes of other people watching, while at the same time being the first time I caught fireworks with a purplish hue. I had red, white, blue and green before, but not purple.
This year, I got several interesting pictures as I captured photos of fireworks. On Sunday, I was over in Birnamwood with my family, and I took almost 1,200 photos. Of those, there were several that stood out for me. Two of them captured fireworks that came out a bright yellow. I’ve had some photos that came across as an off-white, but never really a solid yellow.
Birnamwood’s fireworks show also was unique in that it exhibited pyrotechnics that mimicked fireballs. The first time I saw one of the fireballs, I thought that maybe something had blown up at the launch site. By the second or third one, I realized it was part of the show. I got a couple of good photos with the orange fireballs, but there were some blue ones near the end that I wasn’t quite able to get. Well, there’s always next year.
On Monday, I snapped some photos of Bonduel’s fireworks. I got there early and reached a good spot where the fireworks were practically overhead. I had retracted the roof on my car, so all I had to was aim straight up. I was getting some decent shots, but my best ones came during the finale. The smoke generated from fireworks can be illuminated when you capture it just right, but two photos captured some amazing shots of illuminated smoke coming to life and providing an unfolding background as the flashes of light appeared in the sky.
Just like snowflakes, no two fireworks are alike. As fireworks evolve, so do the amazing pictures you can capture of them. I can hardly wait for next year.