Fishing for LIGHTNING!

***WARNING: DON’T TRY THIS AT HOME…OR ANYWHERE!  I don’t recommend any one do what I do, and I am not responsible if you do!***

I can’t explain it, there’s just something about that lovely, and mostly evasive, creature….LIGHTNING!  Ever since I got my 1st shot a few years ago on a simple old point and shoot 5mp Kodak Easyshare camera I’ve been hooked!  It’s such a challenge and a THRILL to see that brief, beautiful, flash across the sky reflected forever and trapped in my camera!  It’s not easy, and I equate it to fishing in so many ways…granted there’s no pole or bait! LOL!  You set up in a prime location, ready your equipment and try your best not to move, and then you sit….and wait! You fire a few times to “test the waters” or settings and then you settle in waiting for “the big one”.  In the meantime I usually “catch” a few small or medium strikes and that fuels my fire.  Sure there are lightning triggers to do it automatically but that’s like cheating to me…and just doesn’t seem as much fun as sitting and waiting and actually capturing it MYSELF…by my own trigger finger.

The past few years I’ve been blessed to have captured some AMAZING shots, and honestly…I PRAY for  Jesus cares even for the small things 🙂  It’s an experience that I’d love to one day have videoed of me out there “fishing for lightning”. I’m sure I’m entertaining as when a big strike hits and my shutter goes to snapping I stop breathing…then I hesitate a few brief seconds before I hit the playback to see just what I got! Sometimes I was too late, sometimes too early and there’s nothing but BLACK or total WHITE…but those few times I grab those beautiful bolts it’s an adrenaline rush I can’t explain!  The other night there was a Lightning Storm that looked like the Heavens were having a ball with a strobe light!  I set out at a little before midnight to a hill where I could see for miles between some smaller hills.  It was the PERFECT location!  I was surrounded by glorious lightning!!  I rolled down my window (YES I shoot from inside a building, the safety of a front porch or in this case…my SUV), cut the engine and waited.  God likes to toy with me I have determined because just when I get antsy and decide “nothing’s happening in this spot” so I move my lens to a new spot the most amazing lightning rolls across where I just had my lens.  Even in shooting one of His fastest and most dangerous creations He teaches me things…like patience!

Some have asked why I do what I do.  Why I put myself in danger to shoot something so powerful.  The answer is simple.  I am in-tune with my gut feelings (the heart is above ALL things DECEITFUL) and I PRAY before I go.  If I don’t have complete peace that I will be alright, if there’s any doubt that it’s too close or too dangerous, then I don’t go.  Thus why it’s also difficult to capture lightning…there’s not a lot of safe times to capture it.  Conditions have to be just right….and MILES away, for the opportunity to be perfect…and there cannot be strong wind or rain as they impede the qualitiy, stability, and risk water damage  to my equipment. It’s one of this life’s most elusive beauties and while I love getting paid to capture people and their lives and memories, it’s the un-paid passion of landscape photography that is my outlet.  I want to get shots that no one else gets!  I want to forever think back to the time when Jesus showed just how powerful and mighty He is, and how beautiful everything natural that He created really is! And I get to do that with every Lightning bolt I am privileged to possess in my portfolio.

So here now I am going to share some of my most favorite shots from the recent masterpieces to the very first one that “SPARKED” my love of Lightning Photography.  Please don’t copy, save, remove any watermarks, or otherwise rip off my images.  I don’t steal your children so please don’t steal mine!  They are available for purchase however in a variety of sizes and finishes including, linen, canvas, metallic or gallery block.  Please inquire via comment below or through My Website

Also you can view more of my Landscape and Nature Album on Facebook.

The one that started it ALL! Circa: 2006 in Murfreesboro, TN from my 1st apartment's front porch.
January 2010: Poseidon's Trident
July 2009: Cloud to Ground. Taken with a Canon Powershot Elph 10MP Point & Shoot
July 2009: Cloud to Ground. Taken with a Canon Powershot Elph 10MP Point & Shoot
July 2009: Cloud to Ground. Taken with a Canon Powershot Elph 10MP Point & Shoot
April 27, 2011: Cleveland, TN The day the tornadoes came through
April 27, 2011: Cleveland, TN: The day the tornadoes came through
August 4th, 2010: Pretty Purple
August 4th, 2011: "Come Unto Me"
August 4th, 2011: "That Come Hither Finger"
August 4th, 2011: "With These Two Hands"
August 4th, 2011: "Exploding Moon" My Prize Possession! Words can't describe the adrenanline, heart pounding, not breathing, tensed body feeling that coursed through my being as this series of Lightning rolled across the sky. This was the pinnacle of that "set" and when I saw the blackness before and whiteness after from all of the missed shots and "too hot" shots...I SCREAMED! And then began gasping for breathe as I realized I'd stopped breathing. Praise the Lord! Have you ever seen something so AMAZING!!!



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