Instructions on how to create great Starburst effects in photos

March 1, 2020 at 3:46 pm

Instructions on how to create great Starburst effects in photos

Starburst effect (or sunburst) is a simple but very useful technique to give your photo an extra highlight and attract viewers.

If you don’t know how to create a starburst effect, read the article below for more details.


How to create a Starburst effect?

Which technology or science has created the starburst effect is not important to you. However, it is very useful for you to understand this effect and use it most effectively.

A small aperture is the first thing you need to be able to capture the starburst effect in your photos. All things within the range from f/11 to f/22 will close the blades inside your lens to create a small hole.

When light passes through this small gap, light diffraction is formed. In other words, the light will bend when passing through this small gap. Starburst waterlogged effect originates from the light source (like the sun). This process will allow the camera’s camera sensor to capture the starburst effect around the light.

Therefore, it is necessary that you have a small and intense light source to create this effect.

For example, on a clear day, it will work. However, with a dim or gloomy sky, the light source will be diffused, and it will not be possible to create this effect.

And similarly, if the light source is a bright light bulb, you will create a starburst effect. Meanwhile, a fluorescent tube with more light intensity will not help you create this effect.


Day or night?

Want to take photos with the starburst effect properly, you first need to understand the difference between shooting in the day or night. Because of these two conditions, the starburst effect will be different.

The same thing between these two is that you will need a small aperture (high number f). Sometimes (for example in low light conditions) this means you will end up with slower shutter speed.

If you do not want to increase the ISO, try to make sure you use a tripod while taking photos.

How to create a Starburst effect in the day?

Protecting your camera sensor is the first thing you should do when trying to capture the starburst effect during the day. Because you will be shooting under sunlight, so the recommended advice is to use a UV filter.

The biggest difficulty when you take photos during the day is that the sun is often too bright for the scene. Even in the early morning and late afternoon when the sunset is down and there is a softer light, it will be too bright.

This will make you stand out with the highlights in the scene, also known as a cut. So in order to control the amount of light in a scene, you need to cover part of the sun with another object.

A tree, a building, a monument or even mountains will help you limit the amount of light in the frame. However, they also amplify the narrow aperture effect that gives you a starburst effect.

To accomplish this method, you only need to use a few simple techniques. First, you need to set your camera up as if you were photographing the sun but with an object in front of it.

After that, pay attention to focus or direct your camera to the sun or look straight at it. However, care must be taken because it may damage your camera and eyes.

After setting, move your position a bit so that the sun looks out of the side of the object.

If you use this technique correctly, you will see that the light distribution is good in your image.

If there are areas that are overexposed or lack of light, you will be able to recover them after taking photos.

How to create a Starburst effect at night?

Creating Starburst effects at night will be easier than starburst during the day. And the key principle is that you will need to choose a small aperture and have a strong light source.

Night lights, such as street lights, will not be as intense as the sun. Therefore, you do not need to hide part of them. What you need to do is just put your camera on the tripod and choose a small aperture. And note that, put your ISO as low as possible.

This will not cause too much noise to appear in your photos. The shutter speed can be determined by the aperture and ISO you set. Moreover, because you use a tripod, so long exposure will not matter.

Another advantage when taking photos at night is that you can have multiple stars in the same photo. All starburst effects will be on a row of street lights.


Wide aperture compared to a narrow aperture

Honestly, a starry sun will not make your photo attractive. The advice for you is, the Starburst effect should only be used as an additional composition tool when you take photos.

In the light of night, you can combine starburst effects with other things like light trails to make the image stand out and shimmer.

One particular thing about starbursts is that with just a small tweak can make a huge difference.

Step one step aside when taking photos of the sun from behind an object, you get a much larger sunbeam. You can also change the aperture from a wide aperture to a smaller aperture. These operations will also affect the size of starburst.

Starburst photo editing to bring effects

Although you are not a post-end advocate, you will need to make some minor adjustments. As mentioned earlier, one of the biggest difficulties in starburst photography is that your highlights are not garbled.

For areas that are too bright, they are white and do not contain pixel details. We can easily see that when you capture anything you are looking at a light source, you will end up with the cut areas.

Occasionally, it will be a small area like the central area of the light bulb in the picture. However, there will be times, it will be a larger area like the sun in your sky.

If you do not perform any further operations in post-production, you should at least try to recover details in these areas. Lightroom has a very effective slider for other whites (or restores depending on your version).

If you move the slider, you can solve this problem and recover some details most of the time. You need to remember that in extreme cases, this victory can happen.

It is better if you expose your photo when shooting it. After that, you can make your shine so that they don’t make them too dark.


If used well, the Starburst effect will make your photos look better than ever. And it must be affirmed that the Starburst effect creation technique is one of the easier techniques to master and implement. Just take a little time to practice, you will be able to use the starburst effect in your photos.






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