Have you ever noticed images that had lights surrounded by “starbursts” and wondered how that is done? It’s easy.
There are at least three ways to achieve this effect.
- In-camera using just your knowledge and the camera
- In-camera using a special filter
In this post we’ll consider only #1.
There are two basic ingredients –
- A light source (duh)
- Stopping the lens way down – to like f/22
If the light source is “overwhelming” then you must shield it with something and allow just a small portion to show through. This is usually the case with the sun but distant incandescent lamps in a night street scene usually work fine without shielding.
Here are several examples (click to enlarge). Experiment and you’ll get the hang of it in no time.