Fourth of July Fireworks

I headed up to JFK Blvd East to see the Macy’s Fourth of July Fireworks with my tripod, a fold-up chair, and lots of water. I had seen them on the NJ side the past two years and the internet had said it would be in the same place as last year. So I opted to stay up on the ridge rather than head down to the parking lots on Riverside Rd. The aim was to get shots with the city in the back ground.

My view from JFK Blvd East.

I had to get there at least 2 hrs early to get a good spot. So I sat around taking shots of the view and preparations.

Neverending Story cloud.

NYPD making the rounds to Ride of the Valkyries.

Viewers on the ship.

Patriotic water sprayer and one of the launch pads.

At about this point I noticed that the launch pad was being moved further south than usual. Not a good sign. Especially as I had no way of getting down to the areas that would realign me with the view I wanted. It was too close to show time and I would never get a good spot, plus I would have to head down to about 25th St and I was at 45th in the blazing heat with all my equipment. So I stayed put and tried to make the most of it.

All of those boats are filled with paying viewers for the fireworks.

As the sun finally set behind me, I was joined by two other photographers with tripods (I was set up with mine as well). We cordoned off a small area for the three of us and everyone around us was fine with it. Just before the fireworks started a mother shoved her kids between us and into the tripods, causing one of my neighbors to storm off in a huff when she wouldn’t apologize or even acknowledge that shoving her children into equipment to get them a spot close to the wall was a bad idea. I tried to ignore it along with other moments of inappropriateness, but when the fireworks started I had a new problem. They were all to the south of me and I wanted to shoot pictures using very slow shutter speeds – the purpose for bringing the tripod. When I turned my camera to point south, the mother proceeded to stand directly in front of it and wouldn’t move no matter how nice I asked. I gave up and resorted to holding the camera and using my tripod as a rest for my elbow. These are some of the results:

Opening blasts.

Interesting backward c effect.

Time dilation effect.

Multi-color blast.

Looks like a movie planet explosion.

Perfect circle.

This looks like a nebula. Science!

My actual view of the fireworks, fully zoomed out.

A lot at once.


After the show was done, I took a look at the city and noticed all of the smoke wafting into it creating a battlefield view.

The smoke rolls into the city.

I packed up my gear (luckily, nothing was broken in the bag I had stashed under my tripod – something I had forgotten about during the fireworks), took a few shots for the tourists of their groups with their cameras and the city in the background, then headed home with some fun new shots to play with.

City battle aftermath.

About nsantasier

I am an actor, fight choreographer, playwright, and photographer based in and around NYC. I shoot on a Canon Rebel T5i with either a Canon EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS lens or a Canon EF-S 55-250mm f/4.0-5.6 IS Telephoto Zoom lens as they are the only lenses I currently own.
This entry was posted in Fireworks, holiday, Hudson River, Night, NYC. Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Fourth of July Fireworks

  1. Mallory says:

    Too bad that lady was a poophead! Should have taken a picture of her haha. Nice pics tho!

  2. Mallory says:

    (PS I found your blog through Anet SP on facebook)

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