We have all seen the “sunburst” effect, where the sun appears as a star in the photograph…..
I had actually discovered how to this “accidentally” while shooting with my new Tokina AT-X116 Pro DX II lens on my Canon 80D camera.
I was noticing with this lens that I would often get a “sunburst” effect while shooting with the sun in the frame.
It can also be used for balance, to “even out” areas of interest within your photograph.
So how do I do this?
Pretty easy…set your aperture as high as it goes (I use f/22), and set your focus on the entire scene (don’t use spot focus).
I look through the viewfinder until I see the most intense beam from the sun, then focus and take my shot.
A tripod helps, but it’s not completely necessary unless you use a slower shutter speed. I shoot in AV mode, so I let the camera decide which shutter speed to use.
Tip: try to get the sun slightly obscured by something, such as trees or mountains in the above photos. This helps reduce the glare just a bit, and I find it gives out sharper rays.
Give this a try, and let me know how it works by commenting below!
Have fun shooting out there!