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Guitar Thunder (lightning thunderstorm Summer desert from+the+sky sky nighttime ). Photo by NickPoint
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Guitar Thunder

Uploaded by: NickPoint

Friday September 13, 2013

Weiser, ID (Current Weather Conditions)

Caption: ...Channeling the guitar gods...

Manufacturer: NIKON CORPORATION

Model: NIKON D7000

x-Resolution: 72.00

y-Resolution: 72.00

Resolution Unit: Inch

Software: Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 4.1 (Macintosh)

Compression: JPEG compression

Exposure Time: 15 sec.

FNumber: f/5.6

Exposure Program: Manual

ISO Speed Ratings: 100

Exif Version: Unknown Exif Version

Shutter speed: -3.91 EV (APEX: 0, 15 sec.)

Aperture: 4.97 EV (f/5.6)

Exposure Bias: 0.00 EV

MaxApertureValue: 4.00 EV (f/4.0)

Metering Mode: Spot

Light Source: 0

Flash: Flash fired, compulsory flash mode, return light detected.

Focal Length: 12.0 mm

SubSecTimeOriginal: 60

SubSecTimeDigitized: 60

Sensing Method: One-chip color area sensor

File Source: DSC

Scene Type: 1

CFA Pattern: 8 bytes undefined data

Custom Rendered: Normal process

Exposure Mode: Manual exposure

White Balance: Auto white balance

Digital Zoom Ratio: 1.00

Focal Length In 35mm Film: 18

Scene Capture Type: Standard

Gain Control: Normal

Contrast: Normal

Saturation: Normal

Sharpness: Normal

Subject Distance Range: Unknown

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Display: 50, 100, 200 Sort: Newest First - Order Posted
14. pegpics
1:00 PM GMT on September 20, 2013
Really cool shot!!!...envy your talent on both instruments!
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Member Since: September 1, 2009 Comments: 14830
13. saltydawgg
2:36 PM GMT on September 15, 2013
Chuck Berry would love it.. Congrats on the Blue!
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Member Since: January 1, 2009 Comments: 920
12. Emthon
1:59 PM GMT on September 15, 2013
Nicely done! Be careful out there...
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Member Since: September 15, 2001 Comments: 111
11. YouKnowWho
1:57 PM GMT on September 15, 2013
So cool...and an incredible lightning series!
AC congrats!
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Member Since: December 23, 2012 Comments: 29163
10. Faasai
12:33 PM GMT on September 15, 2013
Thats a real electic guitar.Fantastic shot.Congrats on AC!
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Member Since: June 11, 2011 Comments: 4859
9. Clabo
1:45 AM GMT on September 15, 2013
Kewlness!

Perfect pose, too. You kinda got that Lemmy thing going on! :D



[fullsize]
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Member Since: August 24, 2009 Comments: 15167
8. ChrisAnthemum
1:15 AM GMT on September 15, 2013
EXCEPTIONAL image, Nick; congrats on the blue frame! I too appreciate the explanation, and agree that this would make a terrific album cover. If you hadn't told me, I'd have thought that was a guitar pick you were holding.
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Member Since: January 16, 2009 Comments: 28163
7. PlanetPest
10:55 PM GMT on September 14, 2013
Awesome shot! And appreciate the tutorial along with it :D
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Member Since: November 8, 2009 Comments: 1123
6. nanapoo
9:58 PM GMT on September 14, 2013
WOW! My grandson would love this! Very creative cool shot! Congrats!
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Member Since: June 30, 2011 Comments: 28999
5. cyril8
9:20 PM GMT on September 14, 2013
Super creativity for this great lightning capture! Congratulations!
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Member Since: June 23, 2008 Comments: 14217
4. hoecat
8:36 PM GMT on September 14, 2013
This is awesome !!! Jammin to Mother Nature's music. Rock on !!!
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Member Since: September 26, 2008 Comments: 1184
3. NickPoint
7:51 PM GMT on September 14, 2013
The photo is real, not manipulated with Photoshop or stacked with stacking software or cutout and pasted and superimposed over another image. It is part, and was taken among, a series of shots from last night's thunderstorm here in Weiser, Idaho.

It is not as complicated as it appears, really. First, I am pretty knowledgeable about how my camera functions, especially when it comes to shooting long exposures. This isn't to say I am all that good at it, it just means I can make quick adjustments on the fly to adapt to changing conditions in order to get a shot I feel I would be satisfied with.

I shoot lightning when I get the chance and it has been challenging this summer because the storms that have rolled through here have been uncharacteristically violent and I have not felt at all safe being outside, which is a surprise even to me. The few times I tried to take lightning shots this summer ended with me ducking back into my house, running not only from the extremely dangerous and much too close lightning but also from the dust clouds that blotted out the sky due to the 30 and 40 and 50 mph wind gusts. It has been a crazy summer of thunderstorms here and it has been regretful to just watch them go by without having taken a few good shots. They have been wonderful and beautiful to see even though they have sparked a number of large-scale wildfires in our forests here.

Anyway, last night the NWS issued a severe thunderstorm warning for my area, but radar was down so I could not really tell which direction it was going to approach from. I just got prepared and waited to see what was going to happen. The storm came from the north and traveled on a southern course. and thankfully it was about 15 or 20 miles due east of my house. I could see it as it approached from the north and it was just awesome. Lighting bolts were zapping across the sky and into the ground and surrounding mountains at a rate of about every five to 10 seconds.

I had my camera on a tripod and I used a remote control shutter release with the exposure set to bulb so I could keep the shutter open for as long as I wanted. Also, I had the aperture set to f/2.8 to start but I was getting overexposure just because there was so much lightning so I closed it down to f /10 and at times back to f /5.6 I believe. With this I could keep the shutter open for anywhere from 10 seconds to three or four minutes and get multiple strikes in the frame without a total washout.

I did this as the storm came through and got some nice shots but nothing stellar and I basically got bored. So, I set the body flash to rear-sync, which will fire just before the shutter closes. When you use a remote the first push of the button opens the shutter and the second closes it, so with rear-sync flash you can shoot a long exposure and get the stars or lighting or cars on a highway or whatever and then you can basically get another image on the same frame with the use of the flash and a little creativity.

For this shot I opened the shutter and just waited to get a lightning strike in the frame (which was easy because of the lightning's frequency) and then I stepped in front of the camera and hit the remote to close the shutter and trigger the flash. It took me 10 or 15 tries to get this one but It isn't anywhere near what it could have been had I thought about it before the storm showed up and disappeared as fast as it did.

You can see the remote in my hand, which is a bummer, but essential when you play and shoot solo.

If you use the flash to illuminate a subject when the shutter opens, you risk losing a lot of detail and underexposure in the foreground and the lightning just cuts right through the subject and it looks like hell. Ideally you get the lightning first, then flash the subject and that's basically it. Pretty simple when you break it down but it helps to know your camera well and know how to make quick changes or you will probably never even get it set up (in the dark no less) before the storm disappears.

And last, I play guitar and I thought, "what the hell, this might be cool."

Rock On.
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Member Since: August 19, 2012 Comments: 7
2. ruralartist
7:25 PM GMT on September 14, 2013
Crazy dude, crazy!
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Member Since: March 6, 2011 Comments: 6311
1. Outsideshot
6:38 PM GMT on September 14, 2013
Amazing! is this a single shot? it would be a great album cover. The whole series is a 10 you must have been like a kid in a candy store.
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Member Since: February 2, 2011 Comments: 514

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