Ever wonder how to get those lovely blurry globes from Christmas lights? It’s pretty straight forward. Put your camera on a tripod. Don’t use a flash and, if you have an on-board pop-up flash, make sure it’s turned off. Choose a fairly open aperture like f/4 – f/2.8. If using a telephoto lens, use the longest setting. Allow for a relatively slow shutter speed. Take a test shot. Check the histogram. If it’s too dark, either lengthen the shutter speed or increase the ISO – or both. If you want the globes to be yellow like these, change your white balance setting to “cloud”. If you would prefer white globes, use the “tungsten” white balance setting since that’s what most tree lights are. This shot? f/4, 1/30, ISO 3200, focal length 105mm. Try it for yourself.
One week from now Christmas Day will be drawing to an end. The gifts will have been opened, dinner consumed, and things will be winding down. Enjoy the next seven days. It will be done much too soon. Merry Christmas!