Now that is it almost the end of August, storm season is pretty much done for the Calgary area. One of my favourite things about the summer time is storm watching. We have been privey to some great lightning shows over the years. Unfortunately this year we had missed most of the night time shows but there seemed to be an oddly large amount of daytime storms rolling through.
The equipment you need to photograph lightning is a tripod, cable release (not necessary but a good tool to have) and a camera that can shoot in manual (you can probably make due without manual mode but it makes it easier). Lens wise you want something wide enough to capture and frame the area you want. Exposure time will be 8 to 15 seconds so it does not need to be fast glass. The following tutorial by Nick Ulivieri is great for shooting lightning at night.
Since I wasn't having any luck during the night with storms rolling through I started running home after work as the evening storms arrived. In order to shoot the lightning during daylight I used a variable ND filter to stop down the light to get a long enough shutter speed. Using a cable release allowed me to hold the shutter down and shoot continuously. I find it is easier to anticipate lightning at night but during the day I was not having any luck and just fired off shot after shot. The second (and last) day of the year I tried this I got a little lucky and capture one bolt.
The following was shot with the Fujifilm X-T1, XF 18-55 F2.8-4 lens and a Tiffen 72 mm Variable ND filter. The settings were ISO 200, F18 and a 3.2 second shutter speed. This was the only lightning I captured in 2015 and my first daytime photograph.