Photo Friday – CELEBRATIONS – Leannne Chalkley


‘Photo Friday’ is a weekly photography competition that Camera House Australia runs. Every week we choose a new theme and prize, and this week the winner was Leanne Chalkley who entered this adorable image for the theme: CHRISTMAS.

We asked Leanna to share some information about her image, and this is what she had to say:

“This photo was taken in Paris on Bastille Day in 2015. In terms of the Photo itself it was shot on a canon 5D Mark iii, using a 70-200mm lens. The reason for using the telephoto lens is because I was much further away from the fireworks then I wanted to be. The photo was shot in bulb mode with an Aperture of 11, ISO of 100 and a shutter speed of at least four seconds long (don’t have the exact shutter time in front of me).

The lens was set to manual focus prior to it becoming dark and the Focus ring was taped so as not to move throughout the night ( if I had lost focus throughout the night I could have set the lens to infinity focus). The camera was on a tripod for the duration of the photo shoot, due to the camera being on a tripod the image stabilisation was switched off and the viewfinder cover was placed over the back of the viewfinder to prevent light leak in long exposures.

A cable release was used for the shutter. The timing of the actual photo shooting was done by waiting to hear the boom from the fireworks, waiting a couple of seconds and then pressing the shutter button and holding it in until a number of the fireworks had exploded. This was pretty much a trial and error process. In fact this image was one of the mis-fired images. Some of the other images had many more fireworks but I liked the ambience of the sparkling and pink smoke from the fireworks. This shot was taken about midway through the fireworks show. The earlier shots had less smoke and depending on what you like the less smoke might be more appealing.

This shot was edited using lightroom version four. To be honest there was minimal editing on this shot. The image was cropped (much more than I would have liked), clarity increased, saturation is slightly increased and some brightness added. The major fault with this shot was that it was cropped a lot more than I would have liked due to over estimating how big the fireworks would be and not realising they would be pretty contained around the Eiffel Tower. If I had the opportunity again and wasn’t so anxious about getting the shot I would have used the time to refocus and recompose the shot, also had I known that the fireworks show went for well over 15 minutes I definitely would have re-composed!!!

This was one of my first times shooting fireworks and I am happy with the results. I am an amateur photographer and I am still learning. My advice to anyone is use the Internet and read as much as you can about photography but get out there and just give it a go. For this one shot there were at least a dozen shots that did not work.”



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