Canada Day in Ottawa

September 7, 2012
Canada Day in Ottawa

5.4sec @ f/11
200mm, ISO200, 0ev
Evaluative Metering, No flash
Nikon D3s, 75-300mm 4.5-5.6

Being a new-comer to Canada it was to my great delight that Canadians spent an entire day celebrating beer! At least I think that it is what 1st July is all about. This shot sums up my experiences of Canada Day in Ottawa – best viewed from afar (and on top of a really tall building)!

Not only do Canadians drink a lot of beer every 1st July, I was also pleased to know they have an entire weekend dedicated to 24 packs of beer. Seriously, they call it May 2-4 Weekend. The great thing is that the weekend doesn’t always land on May 24, so you can end up drinking any weekend closest to May 24, for the whole weekend including the Monday! Oh, Canadians… how crazy you are.

Back to 1st July. This shot was taken from a 19th floor balcony. This is the first time I have ever taken shots of fireworks and it was certainly challenging. There are many things I would do differently next time. One key point is setting up the shot in the day light. This sounds bizarre, but when it gets dark the viewfinder doesn’t really work so well! Something I found frustrating was if I made the shutter speed too long the sets of fireworks would blend into each other, creating a crazy blur of colour that looked as though my camera was on acid. If I made the shutter speed too short then I would miss the explosion altogether, getting a frame of black.

Just some gear choices I made this time round; definitely wouldn’t have done it without a remote shutter release. The lens is in manual focus mode set to infinity, so that I can just pop the shutter without worrying about focusing. This obviously wouldn’t have worked if I had been closer.

Definitely going to need to shoot a couple more displays before I get the hang of it.


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