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Lightning 2 by Instant-Ocean Lightning 2 by Instant-Ocean
Full view please.

Real lightning bolts. No drawing or additions. Just basic PS corrections.

HOW TO: A lot of people have asked me how was I able to capture this. So here it is in a nutshell:

Required: Tripod, High venture point preferable, Night time ONLY, DSLR capable of full manual.

First, set your camera on your tripod and chose a wide lens. (18mm to 35 should be fine). Set your focus on Manual and set near infinity. Set Aperture to F8 or higher (test for luminosity vs exposure time). Set ISO to 200. Set Exposure time to 4 sec or whatever works for you. Set camera on Constant High Speed Burst. Put that finger of your on the trigger GENTLY and press & hold for a while, taking multiple shots that lasts 4 sec (or more each). If a bolt of lightning strikes while you are shooting, you got it!

Tips: Try to remain still and not move around too much while your finger is on the trigger to prevent camera shake that would cause motion blur and lack of sharpness.

Good luck and BE SAFE!

Instant-Ocean
Add a Comment:
 
:iconstreetgals9000:
streetgals9000 Featured By Owner Aug 6, 2016
Awesome !!!
Reply
:icongbobly:
gBobly Featured By Owner Jul 18, 2011
Awesome! :D
Reply
:iconinstant-ocean:
Instant-Ocean Featured By Owner Jul 18, 2011
Thanks! I think it's my best shot to date. Part luck, part technique. I'm really happy with it and, in all modesty, am proud of it.

It's not perfect... but it's a good shot.

Cheers and be well my friend,

IO :D
Reply
:iconjutheo:
jutheo Featured By Owner Jul 11, 2011
wow!
Reply
:iconkaush:
kaush Featured By Owner Mar 23, 2011  Hobbyist Photographer
Awesome lightning capture.
Really beautiful.
Reply
:iconmayza8888:
mayza8888 Featured By Owner Mar 21, 2011  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
You were right! I love this picture too! :D Can't wait until summer when I can see this again! :D
Reply
:icondigswolf:
digswolf Featured By Owner Mar 14, 2011  Hobbyist Photographer
oh wow absolutely perfect! Was it in a single shot, or in a superposition of multiple shots? If it was in a single one you got very lucky!

On a personal note my method is slightly different than yours, I go for f5.6-8 with ISO-100, the rest is similar (wide angle, exposition time), and it works good as well
Reply
:iconinstant-ocean:
Instant-Ocean Featured By Owner Mar 14, 2011
It was a single shot. Like I said, almost no PS except for the usual adjustments (curves, sharpening and a slight vibrance correction).

Like I said in my How To, I choose F7.1 or F8 but I do say "whatever works for you" depending on your camera, setup, etc... The main goal is not to clip those city lights during the long exposition, or as little as possible. Using ISO 100 allows you to use a larger apperture like F5.6 instead of F8.
Reply
:icondigswolf:
digswolf Featured By Owner Mar 14, 2011  Hobbyist Photographer
yup you have a point about that surrounding light pollution. And you got very lucky to get 3 strikes in the same shot, I never managed to get one so far (best was two: 1 CG and 1 crawler). Next summer maybe ;)
Reply
:iconinstant-ocean:
Instant-Ocean Featured By Owner Mar 14, 2011
Took me 3 years to get that sort of shot.... Just goes to show you. ;)
Reply
:icondigswolf:
digswolf Featured By Owner Mar 14, 2011  Hobbyist Photographer
you have more experience than I do that's for sure
Reply
:iconorange-lucky-cat:
orange-lucky-cat Featured By Owner Mar 13, 2011
AMAZING!!!
Reply
:iconjoergjohannmueller:
JoergJohannMueller Featured By Owner Mar 13, 2011  Hobbyist Photographer
Wonderful moment you capture. Stunning! BTW: Nice How-To-Do.
Reply
:iconaeirmid:
Aeirmid Featured By Owner Mar 11, 2011   Digital Artist
That is really phenomenal. I know how hard it is to capture lightning like that, and you've done a fantastic job. Moreover, the colors are vivid against the darkness, and it's well composed. Great shot!
Reply
:iconmetalelf0:
Metalelf0 Featured By Owner Mar 11, 2011
Great shot, definitely! You were lucky to capture this! :)
Reply
:iconmvanmelsen:
MvanMelsen Featured By Owner Mar 10, 2011   Photographer
Beautiful picture!
Reply
:iconcentralcitytower:
CentralCityTower Featured By Owner Mar 9, 2011  Hobbyist Digital Artist
nice blue lightning
Reply
:iconhi-agni:
Hi-Agni Featured By Owner Mar 9, 2011  Hobbyist General Artist
Wow...I always wondered how people capture so beautiful pictures of lightning. Thanks for tips :hug:
Reply
:iconceej49er:
CeeJ49er Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2011
AMAZING!!!
You did a fine job capturing something that some of us can only dream of capturing.
Gorgeous.
Reply
:iconpicturingit:
Picturingit Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2011
This is awesome! The way the lightning spread is so cool!
Reply
:icon7fray:
7fray Featured By Owner Mar 7, 2011
this is great. amazing capture!
Reply
:iconmatash21:
matash21 Featured By Owner Mar 6, 2011  Student Interface Designer
This is truly a fantastic shot.
I can't wait to get my camera so I can take amazing shots like this.
Reply
:iconralfpfaarphotography:
RalfPfaarPhotography Featured By Owner Mar 5, 2011
Wonderful Capture!
Reply
:iconprimalfuryan:
primalfuryan Featured By Owner Mar 5, 2011  Professional General Artist
Love It :iconbigheartplz:Direct To My :iconfavplz:
Reply
:iconalexgontar:
AlexGontar Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2011  Hobbyist Photographer
Really cool shot! Very cool flash! :)
Reply
:iconperfectangelfighter:
PerfectAngelFighter Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2011
My camera could never get a shot like that.

Good thing yours does! ^^
Reply
:iconinstant-ocean:
Instant-Ocean Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2011
Well, if you read the little "how-to" I wrote, you know what is required. If you can set your camera on manual and have a long exposure, then you can take a shot like that. :D
Reply
:iconperfectangelfighter:
PerfectAngelFighter Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2011
Well, the problem is that I have a peice of crap camera that's almost as old as I am.

I mean, it's so bad that the shutter on the lense doesn't always close or open right.

But thanks though :)
Reply
:iconragilz666:
ragilz666 Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2011  Student Photographer
awesome shot :)
Reply
:iconx-ongaku-x:
x-Ongaku-x Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2011  Hobbyist Photographer
Absolutely fantastic work, great stuff :D
Reply
:iconyodroghistu:
yodroghistu Featured By Owner Mar 1, 2011
amazing... pure... mastepriece.
Reply
:iconadel-imouto-chan:
Adel-imouto-chan Featured By Owner Mar 1, 2011  Hobbyist Digital Artist
looks great! awesome work!
Reply
:iconmassimilianow:
MassimilianoW Featured By Owner Feb 28, 2011
Great tips for taking pictures of thunder. I never tried that. Great picture. Very special, two lightning bolts at the same time.
Reply
:iconst-highwayman:
st-highwayman Featured By Owner Feb 28, 2011   Photographer
amazing work! looks awesome
Reply
:iconkatherinebaker:
katherinebaker Featured By Owner Feb 27, 2011

Lovely! :heart:
Reply
:iconluckydesigns:
luckydesigns Featured By Owner Feb 20, 2011  Hobbyist Photographer
This is an amazing photo! Absolutely perfect timing. :love:
Reply
:iconruslanriad:
ruslanriad Featured By Owner Feb 20, 2011  Hobbyist Photographer
i love lightning.. nice capture
Reply
:iconaneko-chan1:
aneko-chan1 Featured By Owner Feb 20, 2011
Absolutely stunning! I am just wondering, where was this? You did an amazing job at capturing it!
Reply
:icongerjen:
Gerjen Featured By Owner Feb 20, 2011
Incredible shot, I am impressed by the detail.
Reply
:iconnikita666:
nikita666 Featured By Owner Feb 20, 2011  Hobbyist Photographer
I was sad, that I never catched a lightning, but thanks for all of your hints :D
please don't wonder, why I put your pic in the "how to" section. It's because of your description :)
thanks
Reply
:icondicoobraz:
Dicoobraz Featured By Owner Feb 20, 2011
Great shot!
Reply
:iconlogancollin:
LoganCollin Featured By Owner Feb 19, 2011   Photographer
Wow. That is incredible! Very cool!
Reply
:iconthebluesumo:
TheBlueSumo Featured By Owner Feb 19, 2011  Professional Digital Artist
wow amazing capture :D
well done!
Reply
:iconbubbleymonki:
bubbleymonki Featured By Owner Feb 19, 2011
wow perfect lightning shot!
Reply
:iconblaumohn:
Blaumohn Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2011
Long exposure, neh? Looks great. :)
Reply
:iconanglaiserox:
AnglaiseRox Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2011  Student Photographer
WOW! :| Just wow.
I have never seen lightning captured from this angle before!! :wow: Stunning!
Reply
:icondoyles-slave:
doyles-slave Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2011  Hobbyist Photographer
Stunning! :)
Reply
:iconnusio21:
Nusio21 Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2011  Hobbyist Photographer
awesome! :)
Reply
:iconwolfxgizmosis:
WolfXGizmosis Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2011
Brilliant work.
Reply
:iconloevas-eyes:
loevas-eyes Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2011  Student Photographer
amazing ! no noise, really precise picture! and so beautiful ^^ congrats!
Reply
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Details

Submitted on
September 7, 2010
Image Size
524 KB
Resolution
1400×795
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Stats

Views
19,169
Favourites
487 (who?)
Comments
294

Camera Data

Make
NIKON CORPORATION
Model
NIKON D300
Shutter Speed
4/1 second
Aperture
F/8.0
Focal Length
42 mm
ISO Speed
200
Date Taken
Sep 7, 2010, 8:37:21 PM
Software
Adobe Photoshop CS5 Windows
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