Arizona Saguaro Cactus Monsoon Lightning
Everyone loves lightning right? Can't image otherwise. And lightning storms are one of the coolest things about our monsoon season in Arizona. But a good lightning shot, like Milky Way shots - need something framable (or worthy of a shot all by itself) in the foreground - all part of the composition thing right? So first find yourself a cool foreground subject and line things up to get the lightning in the background. I lucked with this one. Stumbled onto this nice Saguaro which lined up well with a couple of others in the distance, and Red Mountain to the right also helped with the frame. I shot 22 exposures at this position and used five of them with good lightning - so this is a five shot composite. In other words, camera on the tripod, adjust the frame and focus then set the intervalometer to shoot every 10 seconds and hope for the best. The shots with the best lightning strikes are loaded into photoshop to create what we used to call double exposures - where two images are combined. But Photoshop lets us do that with many images - same cactus and foreground but with different lightning strikes all added together to create a single final composite. Cool thing here was that all the good lightning exposures were centered just right around and over my primary Saguaro ... planets were in alignment maybe? .
Sony A7Rii, Sony 24-105 firstname.lastname@example.org 24mm, 10 sec exp @200 ISO