If you are anything like me, when you see smoke bomb images, you are absolutely mesmerized! But now, instead of wishing you could capture moments like that, you can use these tips to do just that. Grab my best tips on photographing smoke bombs and creating amazing images.
Even the high quality smoke bomb brands will only give you a minute or two of use. You want to have your lighting, settings, and composition planned out before you activate the smoke. I recommend instructing your subject ahead of time, so they have a clear idea of what you want to capture and how best they can achieve that. You can even rehearse the idea and take some test shots.
Allow the model to move around. The smoke can tend to build up in one area obstructing the subject’s face in the shot or become overwhelming for the model’s eyes. Having some movements planned or let the subject know that if the smoke becomes too thick, they can move in front of it or to the side so they are not lost in the cloud.
Plan for weather and wind. Wind will dissipate the smoke more quickly, so if you want to have streams of the smoke captured in your image, try to shoot on a less windy day, or have surroundings that can block or minimize the crosswinds. Slowly moving the smoke bomb can create defined trains rather than shaking or holding it in one spot.
Smoke bombs have a live spark and the safety of your model and your surroundings is the most important thing! Check your weather conditions before heading out to shoot. Do not use them in dry, brush areas or near flammable substances. Do not use them in public spaces; even if they are harmless, to someone who is unaware of what it is, the amount of smoke may alarm those around you. When you are done with the smoke bomb be sure to dispose of it properly or bring a metal container to store it in until your shoot is over. You can pour water over them to ensure they are entirely put out.
Hold the smoke bomb from the opposite end of the spark and always point it away from faces and other body parts when lighting. Remember there can be a slight delay, so be patient and cautious at all times. The powder released can stain clothing, so again try to point it away from the subjects’ body or plan to do the bomb at the end of the session or when you are ready for a wardrobe change.
Photographing smoke bomb images are so much fun and with these tips, you should definitely be able to do it! Don’t be afraid to get in there, play with it, and have fun. After all, that is what makes photography so special!
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