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Disney World Fireworks

edited January 2015 Posted in » Nikon D5100 Forum
I have the Nikon D5100 with the kit lens, 55-200mm zoom lens and the 35mm f/1.8 lens. We are going to Disney in February and I really want to get great shots of the fireworks near the castle and the Epcot Illuminations fireworks. I want to catch the light trails as well as just the bursts. I have a manfrotto table top tripod and the shutter remote. What lens and settings would be best to capture great photos? I did buy the cheat cards for the 35mm and plan on buying the cheat cards for my other lenses before our trip. Any help is greatly appreciated.


  • @HollieAyne - The 35mm f/1.8G would be my choice for fireworks. It has a wider field of view compared to the 55-200mm, which will capture more sky. With regards to the settings, you can use the "Fireworks / Lightning / Light Trails" cheat card. It will walk you through all the settings and steps for getting a great fireworks shot. With regards to your tripod, if you can't find a table top, you'll have to resort to shooting off the ground. You might be better off with a Joby Gorillapod. The tripod has flexible feet, which allows you to attach to things like railings and light poles. I have one and it's great for family outings, like going to Disneyland.
  • So great! Thank you so much! I can't wait to see the results.
  • You're very welcome @HollieAyne! Please do share your results when you get back from your trip. :)
  • edited January 2015
    The large size Gorillapod is very versatile and can hold a pretty good weight in all sorts of odd positions. Sign posts, chair backs, stair railings, etc are easy. If you add a small ball head to it, there are few situations where you can't manage to point your camera where it needs to be. The ball head need not be very big or capable of smooth panning, as long as it locks good and tight.

    The self timer works fine for fireworks, but you must reset the shutter mode switch each time you shoot. If you do this often, consider an IR remote. You can get a useful aftermarket one from places like B&H for something like 6 bucks, and you can get a multi-camera version at Target stores for something around $10. That version has a bunch of buttons you won't need, but it should work fine. In the menu, you can specify how long between shots the camera will wait before reverting to single shot mode. Standby for remote uses the battery so it can't be permanent, but you can set it to wait for one minute to 15. It's very handy.

    Here's the large size Gorillapod with a small ball head, stuck on a stair railing with very little fuss. The camera, an old Minolta, is probably a bit heavier than a D3200 with a short lens. It's very secure.

    (see here)
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