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Shoot ‘em up

These cameras will let you capture the best firework images this Diwali.

india Updated: Nov 05, 2010 01:42 IST
Nikhil Hemrajani

Shooting fireworks is not for the faint of heart. At some point in time, we’ve all tried to capture roman candles in the sky only to end up with rather dismal results. First, there’s the problem of timing the shot. Often, the show’s over before you’ve even clicked the snap.

Fashion photographer Vikram Bawa comes to the rescue. “First, balance your camera on something sturdy. It could even be the bonnet of a car, if needed. Also, wait for 2-3 fireworks to go off before taking a photo.” As far as shooting modes are concerned, “Shoot using a slow shutter speed and set a 5 or 10 second timer so that your hand doesn’t cause any shakes in the image” he says.

But more important is the kit you use. You don’t wear moccasins to the gym or training shoes to a formal dinner, right? In much the same way, you can’t expect good results from a generic camera regardless of what the salespeople might have you believe. “I recommend the Sony Alpha NEX-5 for everyday users” mentions Bawa.

For the uninitiated, the NEX-5 rests between compact point-and-shoot cameras and digital SLRs, as it sports the new Micro four-thirds system. Such cameras are far less bulky than professional SLRs, while offering near equivalent photo quality. The NEX-5 can take photos at 14.2 megapixels, capture high definition 1080p videos and shoot at 7 frames per second in burst mode. While the camera isn’t available officially yet, you can buy it off websites like eBay.in.

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Rajdeep Ved from Vibgyor Photos, Fort, suggests the Panasonic Lumix TZ10. Though a compact camera, “it’s easy to carry around in your pocket and gives excellent results.” The TZ10 packs in 720p grade video recording, 12 megapixels stills, and 12x optical zoom. The Carl Zeiss tag on the lens will ensure sharp and clear photos. As the icing on the cake, there’s GPS functionality built-in as well – this will automatically tag your photos with the location where they were shot.

Finally, photographer Vipurva Parikh recommends the Canon Powershot G11 as his weapon of choice. “It’s great for shooting in low light. There are tonnes of manual controls too for those who want to tinker around.” As far as tips go, he mentions, “Keep the flash off as it’ll wash out the visuals. Use a tripod if possible and don’t expect stunning photos the first time you try.”