(From the Archive, with some modifications)
Capturing the Festival of Lights
Deepawali is an important festival of India. This festival is full of illumination and enjoyment. We have an ideal opportunity for interesting photographs on this occasion. With a few points in our mind, we can click memorable images of this occasion.
* As this festival is celebrated during late evening part of the day, we have to set the ISO of our camera at a high point (400 or onwards). This will help us capturing the festival properly. If we are shooting the firecrackers, we should under expose the photograph a little in order to enhance the details and hues.
* Illuminated and decorated cities offer opportunity for excellent photographs. Here also, we should use a high ISO. If we wish to have noise free photographs, we should use a low ISO. In such case we have to rest our camera on a tripod. This will avoid camera shake and will result into sharp pictures. Along with a low ISO we can set a small aperture to achieve a good depth of field. But In such case moving objects will tend to blur. Sometimes blurred moving objects add fantastic effect to the picture. Use of a wide angle lens is very friendly in capturing illuminated streets or buildings.
* Using a high view point often gives fantastic results.
* Shooting colourful electric bulbs with utterly low shutter speed with intentional camera shakes occasionally results into magical results. For this point, we have to set a low shutter speed (such as 1/15 sec. or 1/30 sec.) with a low ISO setting. Now by aiming at an appropriate illuminated decoration, we have to do two things at the same time, pressing the shutter releasing button and shaking the camera randomly. We can repeat this act twice, thrice or more. This will result into some pretty graphical images.
* People busy in different activities can also be our subject. Here we have to use a slight high ISO. In this situation we can use camera flash also.
* Our aim should be to capture the true feel of this festival.
* Apart from above technical points, the visual sense, presence of mind and fine skills of a photo artist will help in creating marvellous Deepawali Photographs.
--Dr. Pankaj Sharma