Lightning Photography Tutorial







Lightning Photography Tutorial: Richard Bishop

Lightning photography requires technique, patience and a lot of luck.

I took the above image when I was 8 years old and it was published on the front page of the local newspaper, the Shrewsbury Chronicle.

This cloud to ground strike clearly shows leaders descending to an oak tree in and subsequent return strokes.

The oak tree in question is still there next to the Rea Brook in Sutton, Shrewsbury.

The simplest and possibly the safest way to photograph lightning is to set the camera up on a window sill when there is a storm. If you are lucky enough to have a hill with trees on it nearby, point it in that direction.

Set the ISO to 400 and the aperture to f/11. Open the shutter on the bulb setting and wait. If and when a bolt strikes close the shutter.

Having the shutter open for a long time requires minimal light pollution so if where you live has street lighting you will be at a disadvantage and have to open and close the shutter frequently while you are waiting for a strike otherwise your image will be over-exposed.

Good luck.

PS Whatever you do, get off the hills when a thunderstorm approaches.