Sunday, December 25, 2011

Starburst Photos - Before You Pack Up Your Holiday Lights

Photos taken with a Kodak Easyshare digital camera

Years ago, when I had a Canon EOS film camera with changeable lenses and filters, I learned a trick for getting the starburst effect on lights without purchasing an expensive filter. I used to use that trick all the time, but over the years, I got new cameras, moved on to digital, and forgot about the wonderful things filters can do...until I was talking with the designer of a book cover for a book I recently edited. I told him how much I loved his artwork, especially the nightscape with the starburst street lights. When he said that people have gotten away from filters, the light bulb went on in my head. 

I remembered that old trick, and I wondered whether it would work with a digital camera. You can see that it did in the above photos. Here's the trick:

Stretch a section of sheer hose or a sheer scarf across the lens! It's as simple as that! You'll get a slightly foggy effect with the lights transformed into stars. The closer the shot, the better. I tried photographing my tall Christmas trees full-length, and while the lights were bigger, the star effect didn't quite happen.

Try this with your camera and amaze your family and friends with photos of your holiday lights. They'll wonder how you did that! But it can be our little secret. ;-) 


  1. That's beautiful - I love it!

  2. Wow, that IS really pretty. I like that idea :)


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