Capturing the magic of fireworks through photography is a real challenge. Translating what is an all senses experience into just a visual medium takes time and skill. Whether it’s a grand celebration or an intimate gathering, the right techniques can transform your fireworks photos from ordinary to extraordinary. In this guide, we’ll explore five essential tips to help you master the art of fireworks photography and capture breathtaking moments that will leave a lasting impression.

1 – Scout the Location

Before the fireworks show begins, take some time to scout the location for the perfect vantage point. Look for spots with unobstructed views of the sky and consider incorporating interesting foreground elements such as landmarks, buildings, or bodies of water. Pay attention to the direction of the wind to avoid smoke interference in your shots, ensuring clear and vibrant images. I normally do this during daylight hours, and once I have my spot I often set my cameras up before it goes dark, saves all that fumbling around in the darkness!

I spend many more hours finding the right location than I do actually taking the pictures. For example this shot from outside the Adele concert at Wembley, I spent a full day (the day before!) scouting out buildings before I talked my way onto a balcony opposite the stadium. Sadly now an impossible picture to take as they have build an apartment block in the way!

Titanium Fireworks firing from the Wembley Arch for the Adele Concert

2 – Use Manual Mode Switch your camera to manual mode to have full control over your settings. Start by setting a low ISO (typically between 100-400) to minimize noise and maintain image quality. Opt for a wide aperture (around f/8 to f/16) to ensure sharpness and depth of field, capturing the intricate details of the fireworks against the night sky. Try using bulb mode.

3 – Long Exposure Settings

One of the key techniques in fireworks photography is using a slow shutter speed to capture the full beauty and motion of the fireworks. Begin with an exposure time of a few seconds (approximately 2-4 seconds) and adjust accordingly based on the brightness and intensity of the fireworks display. Longer exposures can create stunning trails of light, adding drama and excitement to your photos.

4 – Stability is Key

To avoid blurry images caused by camera shake during long exposures, invest in a sturdy tripod to keep your camera steady. Position the tripod on a stable surface and adjust the height and angle as needed for the best composition. Additionally, use a remote shutter release or the camera’s self-timer function to trigger the shutter without physically touching the camera, minimizing vibrations and ensuring crisp, sharp images.

5 – Experiment with Framing and Composition

Don’t limit yourself to capturing just the fireworks themselves; incorporate interesting foreground elements or silhouettes to add depth and context to your photos. Experiment with different compositions, angles, and framing techniques to create visually compelling images that tell a story and evoke emotions. Remember to leave some negative space around the fireworks to allow them to shine and command attention in the frame. If you have a spare camera with you, why leave it in the bag! Get it out and use it! I will often times use upto 5 cameras at once, all with different points of view and settings. This allows me to experiment whilst knowing I have the main angle covered.


Mastering the art of fireworks photography requires patience, practice, and a willingness to experiment with different techniques and settings. By following these five essential tips, you’ll be well on your way to capturing spectacular fireworks photos that showcase the magic and beauty of these mesmerizing displays. So grab your camera, find the perfect vantage point, and let your creativity soar as you embark on a journey to capture breathtaking moments that will be cherished for years to come.

Or if you don’t fancy doing all that, just book me to come and do it 🙂