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How to Take a Still Photograph With A Motion Object

Still photographs are fairly easy to take since you have an object or a scene, you point at it, and snap the photo of it. It doesn't move, so you can take countless pictures and one is bound to come out, right? But what about photos that have still elements and motion elements? It is possible to take a still shot and have an element of motion involved. Here is how:


  1. You need a scene a streetscape is usually great, since the environment (e.g. the buildings and roads) don't move, but cars and people do.
  2. You need to keep the scene in focus, but have the motion objects blurred.
  3. Focus your camera on the scene and ignore the moving object for now. Once you have a nice frame and composition, wait.
  4. As a car approaches into the viewfinder, begin to snap the picture.
  5. Make sure you have a long exposure to allow the light to blur the motion in your camera.

Red Means Go


  • Long exposure is critical, however any shaking of the camera will blur the entire photo, or worst put, it all out of focus. To counter this use a tripod or use the auto-timer of your camera.
  • These types of shots are particularly cool at night, however, they easily go out of focus. Make sure you set your camera to have the right amount of exposure and your camera is dead still.
  • Sports, highways, trains, cars and any human movement are great motion shots.


Coming Or Going? Subway In Motion, Station in Focus


  • Because of the motion and the uniqueness of the object moving, these types of photos are one of a kind shots. Thus you probably can't replicated your shot. At best you can imitate it by trying the same set up at the same time and same place.
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