How To Take Pictures With Balloons

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Picture a valley in the early hours of the morning. 1 by ane, colourful hot air balloons first dotting the blue sky.
Balloon festivals can look stunning in a photo. But neat hot air balloon pictures are not like shooting fish in a barrel to take.
Here are 10 tips to help y’all capture astonishing hot air balloon photos.

© Kav Dadfar

1. Arrive Early to Find the Best Photography Spot

Any type of photography you practice, it’s always a skillful idea to arrive early on. This is particularly true for a airship fiesta, yearly hot air balloon festivals organised throughout the world.
1 famous event is held in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
Arriving early on to the event volition permit you to have your time and scout the location before photographing. Merely it will likewise mean you can secure a adept spot for you and your camera bag when the crowds arrive.
The good thing nearly balloon photography is that it is usually washed in an open space. So you should detect y’all have plenty of room.
When you get to a location, start by looking around for potential vantage points that y’all can photograph from.
It’due south also worth having a chat with some of the crew members or volunteers and fifty-fifty the pilots. They might have knowledge of places that will give you a skillful view.

A mountains evening landscape with the silhouettes of photographers preparing to take hot air balloon photos
© Kav Dadfar

ii. Photo the Training for More than Variety

Anyone who has arrived early on at a hot air balloon launch will tell you lot how much preparation goes into getting things ready.
Unrolling the balloon off the truck. Attaching the handbasket. Checking the burners. Slowly filling the balloon up earlier finally filliping it so it is upright.
Whilst a blown upwards hot air airship is the focus for most photographers, it’due south also worth photographing the preparation.
This volition give your hot air airship photos variety and aid tell more of a story.
Kav Dadfar-2018-ExpertPhotography-Photographing-Hot-Air-Balloons-2

3. Get Close-Up Hot Air Airship Pics

One of the most photogenic elements of hot air balloons is the colorful airship textile.
Call back almost information technology, how many times have y’all seen a boring greyness balloon? Never, right? And then, any hot air airship photography should too include some close-ups.
Get shut enough to fill the entire frame with the colourful airship material. Use a zoom lens for this. These abstruse photos will await great but as well add variety to your portfolio.
But getting closer also applies to other elements of balloon photography. For example, if y’all are photographing the crew, don’t stand up far away and zoom in using a telephoto lens. Instead, go shut to your subject.
Interact with them and you are far more than likely to capture a candid photograph than being far away.

A close up photo of a colorful hot air balloon
Credit: Dreamstime

four. Expect for Your “Wow” Shot

Whenever I run photo tours or workshops, I ever prepare a chore for my students which involves capturing three photos. A close-upwards, something which shows context (like an environmental portrait) and the big, impressive broad angle shot.
This is a nifty way to call up most whatsoever scenario y’all are photographing.
You’ve captured the early morning preparation. Then yous walked amongst the balloons and got some shut-up images. Now you need that large “wow” shot that could announced equally a double folio spread or front encompass.
Hopefully, you lot already know the spot to capture this from when you lot were scouting earlier in the day. At present it’s fourth dimension to execute it.

A landscape filled with hot air balloons
© Kav Dadfar

5. Frame Your Shot Before the Balloon Is in Position

1 of the good things about hot air airship photography is that you will have enough of time to photograph things. Hot air balloons don’t motion very fast then you can set your frame and wait for the perfect moment.
Once you take establish your perfect location and framed your shot, simply wait until that hot air airship moves into the position that you want.

A Lonely Planety guide to turkey with a hot air balloon picture on the front cover
© Kav Dadfar

6. Add together a Point of Interest to Highlight the Hot Air Balloon

Just because you are photographing hot air balloons doesn’t mean that it should exist the only thing in your photos. You will find that the best pictures of hot air balloons comprise them into a scene.
Look for points of interest and frame your shot around that to add context. This could be buildings, onetime temples, people or even interesting landscapes like mountains or h2o.

Photographers taking hot air balloon pictures of a balloon just taking off
© Kav Dadfar

7. Try Unlike Perspectives to Stand Out From the Crowd

Whenever you lot are going to photograph anything, you should spend some fourth dimension doing research and planning your shoot. The ultimate aim is to endeavor and capture something unique and different to what already exists.
Capturing images of hot air balloons is no different. Past doing some research you tin run across the type of photos that exist and what you tin do to create something unique.

A photograph shot through a hot air balloon
© Kav Dadfar

8. Photo Hot Air Balloons From the Air

As fantastic as capturing hot air balloon photos from the basis is, nothing beats doing it from the sky. It will give you a completely dissimilar perspective and allow yous to capture wonderful hot air balloon pictures.
Grooming is vital though. The baskets volition exist minor with not much room to manoeuvre. It’s important to get a good spot, otherwise you may notice that your view is blocked by other people in the basket.
Speak to the balloon operator or even the pilot beforehand to meet if they will allow yous to get the best spot in the handbasket. This is some other reason why arriving early is always useful!

A blue and white hot air balloon over a rocky mountain landscape
© Kav Dadfar

9. Camera Settings for Hot Air Balloon Photography

There is no magic setting that works in every scenario. Balloon photography is like whatever other genres of photography. It will offering different challenges based on the atmospheric condition to overcome.
Everything from the light bachelor to atmospheric condition weather will accept an impact on your photo.

A close up portrait of a photographer taking hot air balloon photos
© Kav Dadfar

Here are some simple tips to help you get your best camera settings correct:
Photographing a Hot Air Balloon at Night

Whether it’s night or early on forenoon, your big challenge will exist the lack of available light. The settings that you cull will depend on whether yous are using a tripod or non.
If you are using a tripod then you can become away with slower shutter speeds (such as ane/60 sec or slower). But keep in mind that if you lot are photographing something that is moving like balloons or people, a likewise tedious shutter speed will make them blurry.
If you are not using a tripod, then your only option will be to enhance your ISO level. This will allow you lot to take a shutter speed fast enough for handheld photography. Depending on how dark it is, you lot may take to become to ISO 2000 or even higher.
Simply raise your ISO as loftier as it needs to become. The higher it is, the more noise will be in your photos.

A close up photo of a colorful hot air balloon at night
Credit: Dreamstime

Hot Air Balloon Photos During the Twenty-four hour period

Daytime makes things much easier. You won’t need a tripod. There should be plenty light to allow yous to photograph handheld.
Your main considerations are what yous are photographing and your artistic vision.
If you are photographing a landscape scene of the launch field, y’all’ll want a greater depth of field. This, in plow, will determine your shutter speed and your ISO.
But if you are photographing the airship in the sky during the air show only, then your chief business organisation will be your shutter speed if you want to freeze the action.
So that volition determine the other settings on the exposure triangle.

A hot air balloon over a flat grassy landscape
© Kav Dadfar

10. How to Stay Safe When Taking Hot Air Balloon Photos

Also e’er being polite and courteous to pilots, crew and other passengers, you lot also need to brand certain you stay condom. And that you practise not endanger other people.
Exist extra careful non to harm the balloon fabric or the ropes when effectually them. It goes without maxim that you lot shouldn’t become inside of the balloon or look at the burners without permission from the airplane pilot or the crew.
Once yous are on-board, go along your valuables and photographic camera equipment secure and then they do not fall out.

Setting up for taking hot air balloon photos in low light
© Kav Dadfar

Hot air balloon photography is a wonderful subject matter to photograph. It can requite boggling images and is lots of fun. But frequently to capture the best hot air balloon photos it volition need planning, some luck and a lot of persistence.
The more hot air balloon pics you accept and the more than events you lot attend, the ameliorate your chances of capturing smashing photos. In the meantime, these x tips should help yous capture great hot air balloon photos.