We went out for dinner at the lake yesterday to celebrate Canada Day and my birthday, both. Knowing we'd be walking the boardwalk, I made the hard decision of choosing one of my lighter lenses for my camera (a prime lens) and leaving my tripod at home.
There were many times throughout the evening I wished I would have brought this lens or that lens. This was good for me because it forced me to do the best with what I had. Before the daylight disappeared I focused on the point where I knew the fireworks would be shot from and stayed put. I also made sure to set my shutter speed to "bulb" so I could control exactly how long the shutter would be open for, based on the variable length of the displays. Next, I set things up so I had a greater depth of field.
Once the fireworks began I made sure to keep my camera as steady as I could; handheld is limited (I hold my breath until a moment or two after I release the shutter). I left the shutter open from the beginning of the fireworks' pop to the end of its trails. This created beautiful and unique fireworks shots for me, even with a bit of camera shake.
Not everything will always be perfect. We won't have all the gear, the right gear or the right lighting. But that is when we are pushed beyond what we know. And that is a good thing, a very good thing.