The excitement, hard work of shooting a storm

  • A storm last September brought intense lightning which was captured by Daily Herald photographer Paul Valade just to the east of the Mundelein Village Hall.

      A storm last September brought intense lightning which was captured by Daily Herald photographer Paul Valade just to the east of the Mundelein Village Hall. Paul Valade | Staff Photographer

  • Paul Valade

    Paul Valade

 
Updated 1/31/2020 9:28 PM

There is something about a good thunderstorm that gets your heart pumping. Storms can incite fear, excitement and awe. For photojournalists, a good storm brings the opportunity to take awesome photos -- ominous clouds, aftermath of high winds and, if lucky, a tornado. I personally love the challenge of getting a good lightning photo.

Last September, halfway through a volleyball match I was covering at Stevenson High School in Lincolnshire, I received a text about a tornado warning in Lake County. There were reports stirring of storms developing that evening. I headed north toward Mundelein. The radar showed the storm was hitting that area. I made a few photos of flooded streets as the storm didn't cause any damage. As the storm moved east, the lightning intensified. I found an open area near the Mundelein Village Hall and I had a clear view of the storm.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

Since it was still raining, I took photos from my car. When I saw lightning stirring, I would fire off a few frames. I probably took a couple hundred shots before I captured this beauty. The lightning is intense, but the illuminated clouds by the bolt make this shot a winner. I used Nikon D750 with a 24 mm lens. The ISO was set to 8000 and the exposure was 1/20 of a second at f/8.

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