Fireball Photography?

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by Assiez, Nov 21, 2005.

  1. Assiez

    Assiez TPF Noob!

    Nov 21, 2005
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    I want to take some photographs of balls of natural gas being lit by a match. I can easily make the balls of gas with washing detergent and some natural gas, but I’m unsure about how I could capture them on film….

    I would like to have a completely black background with only the fire seen, so what kind of lighting should I use? Would the flames themselves provide enough light in a almost completely dark room? Also what aperture setting would be best for such a speedy event?

    I have a Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ15 digital camera, I have access to 35mm film cameras.

    Also I was thinking of trying to film the event digitally and getting one frame out of the movie for the photo. Would that work, or would the quality be horribly lacking?


  2. Rob

    Rob TPF Noob!

    Jan 29, 2005
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    Hi there,

    As I am sure you have a basic grip of Physics... The light output of the fireball will be directly proportional to the size of the fireball, your distance from it and the amount by which it fills the frame. In camera terms I believe that it would not be particularly bright or particularly quick so I think there's every chance you could get away with an auto-mode shot with a tripod.

    35mm would be ideal with a camera with a motor drive - It's my belief that the movie idea would be both complex to do and would yield crap results.

    Let us know more on what you're trying to achieve (is it for a magazine, prints, web) and we may be able to help more.

    p.s. there's got to be some kind of "playing with fire" warning here!

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