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Dream-Like Long Exposure Photos of Fireflies in Nagoya, Japan

If you are tired of the usual long exposure photos, then this post is for you. Japanese photographer Yume Cyan has spent the last month in the forests of Nagoya City, Japan, shooting some surreal long exposure photographs of fireflies.

His long exposure shots (often 30 seconds at ISO 800) were taken with a Canon 5D Mark III and 50 mm lens. The aperture was set at f/2.8 – this made the closer fireflies look like out-of-focus circles of light. Finally the photos were combined together into composite shots.

According to Wikipedia, there are more than 2,000 species of fireflies, but despite their name, only some species produce adults that glow. These lightning bugs produce the most efficient light in the world – nearly 100 percent of the energy in the chemical reaction is emitted as light.

You can usually take such surreal photographs during the rainy seasons, from June to July, when fireflies mate after thunderstorms. For more examples, be sure to check out Long Exposure Photos of Gold Fireflies by Yuki Karo.

Website: 500px | Facebook | via: thisiscolossal, petapixel

Long Exposure Photos of Gold Fireflies by Yuki Karo

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What do you think?

  • Petya Harizanova via Facebook


  • Vito Tautonico via Facebook

    Where can we find high res of these pictures?

  • Jevon Law via Facebook

    glowing poop

  • Bored Panda via Facebook

    the high res images are on Yume Cyan’s facebook page:

  • Jeannine Bourdeaux via Facebook

    magically beautiful

  • Gintare Asadauskaite via Facebook


  • Gary van der Steur via Facebook

    Not convinced these are legit. Can’t understand why there’s no motion. Cf: Yuki Karo.

  • Janet Liebling via Facebook

    eat?? why??

  • Hortencia Hernandez Mendez via Facebook

    Bellisimo… Miles son luciérnagas

  • Adelaide Miotto via Facebook

    Alessandra Ottolenghi

  • Caroline Webber via Facebook

    agreed on the fake… they would leave light trails on a long exposure. Beautiful though.

  • Bored Panda via Facebook

    According to Petapixel, “Yume snaps long exposures of the scenes — often 30 seconds at ISO 800 — and then combines them together into composite shots. With his aperture set at f/2.8, the closer fireflies show up as out-of-focus circles of light while the ones further away are captured as points. “

  • Ylwa Karlsson via Facebook

    Fairytale! :)

  • Gary van der Steur via Facebook

    “Points” seem to be an impossibility unless insects remain stationary. If they were composited short exposures I could almost see it. Wait, perhaps these are hybrid bugs, crossed with tiny strobes.

Author:   Date posted: Jun 6th, 2013
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