I'm slightly inspired by the picture in this question involving candle flames.

I'm interested in taking similar pictures of candle flames and fire more generally, but I worry that it might cause damage to either the optics or the sensor. Is this a legitimate worry?

In case the answer would vary based on the quality of my equipment, I currently have a Canon 550D, the standard 18-55mm kit lens and a Tamron 70-300mm (all fairly low-level stuff, I know).


1 Answer 1


Unless you get so close to the flame that you burn or get soot on the front lens element, photographing candles will not damage your camera.

Assuming your 70-300 lens has the same 1:2 macro setting as mine, this is probably your best option; I have taken some good shots of igniting matches with that lens.

  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ Correct. But on the same line of thought: do be careful about lasers. Those can damage your sensor. \$\endgroup\$
    – Roflo
    Commented Oct 21, 2012 at 18:29
  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ @Roflo What about eyes when you look through view finder. Need to be careful when shooting a bright Sun as well. \$\endgroup\$
    – GoodSp33d
    Commented Oct 22, 2012 at 8:15
  • \$\begingroup\$ Right @kantu, that's worth mentioning too. \$\endgroup\$
    – Roflo
    Commented Oct 22, 2012 at 20:19

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