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How to Photograph Storms

How to Photograph Storms

Thunderstorms are one of nature’s most powerful and beautiful displays. This is the perfect time of the year to capture incredible storm photography depicting Mother Nature’s wrath and power. There are a lot of things to consider before you grab your gear and start storm chasing. Here are some ways to stay safe, and some tips for capturing images of the power of Mother Nature.

Stay Safe
Obviously, when taking thunderstorm photography, there’s going to be lightning nearby. Because this can potentially be very dangerous, you need to take precautions when shooting thunderstorm photography. You should maintain a safe distance from the storm when shooting storm photography. Avoid straying too far away from your vehicle or home in case conditions take a sudden turn for the worse. If you’re shooting thunderstorm photography when the storm is too close to shoot safely, consider shooting your storm photography from indoors.

Storm Photography Gear
When storm chasing, you may have to move location quickly. You want to be able to grab the equipment you’re using for your storm photography in a split second. It’s best to only take what will fit in your camera backpack. Pack a DSLR with enough megapixels to capture every little detail in your storm photography. The Canon EOS 90D CMOS Digital SLR Camera from, with its 32.5MP will capture the sideways blowing rain to the top of the shelf clouds to the wide expanse of the beautiful rainbow that follows. There are three lenses to pack for your thunderstorm photography so you don’t miss a shot when storm chasing. The Nikon 14-24mm f/2.8 is the perfect ultra-wide angle lens for capturing the entire storm as it approaches. If you’re interested in taking panoramas, the Sony FE 24-70mm F2.8 GM Full Frame E-Mount Lens will make a great addition to your storm chasing backpack. When the storm is raging, the lightning is extremely close, or you’re photographing a tornado, the Sony FE 70-200mm F2.8GM E-Mount Lens is perfect for those times you’re not comfortable getting close. This incredible telephoto lens, with its 2.8 aperture, is a must for storm photography. Filters are a must to protect those lenses from flying debris and dust, and of course rain. Don’t forget the lens cloths to wipe away the rain drops.

Photographing Lightning
Lightning can strike anywhere while you’re shooting thunderstorm photography. That’s why photographing lightning is one of the most exciting aspects of storm photography. Lightning comes and goes in a blink of an eye, and you never know what part of the sky the lightning will appear. This is why you need to be prepared with the correct camera settings when the opportunity arises for photographing lightning. To begin preparing for photographing lightning set your lens to manual focus and focus to infinity on the horizon. Set the ISO on your camera from to the lowest setting. When photographing lightning, it’s important to get the correct exposure when those lightning strikes brighten up the dark sky. Setting your camera to manual mode will ensure this happens when photographing lightning. To better your chances at capturing a lightning strike when photographing lightning, set a long shutter speed between 5 and 30 seconds. Use a small aperture of f/16 or f/22 for photographing lightning during daytime. This may also require using a lens filter to reduce the amount of light reaching your camera. When photographing lightning at night, you may need to try lower apertures. The most important part of photographing lightning is staying safe. Sometimes photographing lightning requires that you set your camera on a tripod beside your vehicle and remain inside your car. Trigger the shutter using a remote when photographing lightning.

These tips for capturing thunderstorm photography will help you safely capture some remarkable images.

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