Friends of Big Bend National Park
Big Bend Conservancy

Over-estimating your experience or under-estimating the terrain in a place like Big Bend can result in serious injury or death. Use the information and advice found here wisely. Climb/Hike/Camp/Drive at your own risk.

+-Calendar for sale

 2019 BigBendChat Calendar on sale now!


Article on Night/Star Photography

  • 14 Replies
  • 9794 Views
*

Offline tjavery

  • Golden Eagle
  • Mountain Lion
  • *
  • 1508
  • foto nut
    • http://www.thomasjavery.com/proj_big_bend
Article on Night/Star Photography
« on: May 14, 2010, 09:29:38 AM »
Hi all,

I've been working on an article about night photography specifically for dark skies that also include landscapes (ground-based objects). I've just finished a draft and have uploaded it here:

http://www.texbrick.com/photo/notes/starshots.pdf

This is based on my experiences and covers shooting locations, conditions, gear, and post processing. Let me know if you have any comments. This is something that I'll update over time as I continue with this type of photography. Thanks!




*

Offline Terlingua50337

  • Diamondback
  • *
  • 440
  • West Texas road trip? Get in......... I'll drive!
    • Leeds Fine Western Art Photography
Re: Article on Night/Star Photography
« Reply #1 on: May 14, 2010, 11:53:40 AM »
Yes! :cool-thumb: A comment/curiosity..... on page 8 the photo of Water and Stars in the Hill Country, in the sky no star trails but on the reflection in the water there are. Can't wait to put some of this to work. Thanks TJ

*

Offline tjavery

  • Golden Eagle
  • Mountain Lion
  • *
  • 1508
  • foto nut
    • http://www.thomasjavery.com/proj_big_bend
Re: Article on Night/Star Photography
« Reply #2 on: May 14, 2010, 12:57:41 PM »
Thanks! You have a keen eye  :icon_lol: That particular photo is a composite of two exposures (I think I noted that in the article). The exposure for the foreground (water) was much longer, however I don't think it was long enough to have really noticeable star trails. I think maybe it's more of a visual effect of the reflection and the angle.



Anyway, I wish I didn't live in the light pollution capital of the south (Houston) sometimes. I'd love to be able to step into my backyard at night and see stars like this  :icon_biggrin:

*

Offline troubledog

  • Kangaroo Rat
  • *
  • 9
Re: Article on Night/Star Photography
« Reply #3 on: May 14, 2010, 01:18:02 PM »
TJ

this is fantastic and it will help me grow the learning curve on star shooting tremendously.

The Big Bend area is one of the darkest on the continent.  Star gazing is one of the things that has always attracted me back to the park.

I've taken a few night shots over the past few years, stumbling my way through this, here are a few which are not great but I enjoyed making them.  I've relied pretty heavily on high ISO capability from my D700, but there's still lots of noise in the shots.


60-second exposure of the starscape at our campsite in BBRanch.  Foreground lit with a flashlight.  Too much noise in the sky and the exposure was too long.  18mm, 75 seconds, 1600 ISO


Western Big Bend NP.  10.5mm fisheye, corrected for distortion.  ISO 1600, 88 seconds


Western BBNP.  73 seconds, 1600 ISO, 10.5mm lens


From the Basin, BBNP.  28mm prime, 6400 ISO, 30 seconds


Thanks

Dave

*

Offline TexasAggieHiker

  • Mountain Lion
  • *
  • 1229
  • The road goes on forever & the party never ends...
Re: Article on Night/Star Photography
« Reply #4 on: May 14, 2010, 01:37:21 PM »
This is so awesome!!  Thank you so much TJ!!   :eusa_clap:

*

Offline The Scorpion

  • Mountain Lion
  • *
  • 1966
    • My Big Bend Photos
Re: Article on Night/Star Photography
« Reply #5 on: May 14, 2010, 05:31:10 PM »
great article TJ.....

James
everything is better with bacon!!!

http://jamesb.smugmug.com/BigBendNationalPark/

*

Offline presidio

  • Soaptree Yucca
  • Mountain Lion
  • *
  • 3509
Re: Article on Night/Star Photography
« Reply #6 on: May 14, 2010, 08:37:24 PM »
Hi all,

I've been working on an article about night photography specifically for dark skies that also include landscapes (ground-based objects). I've just finished a draft and have uploaded it here:

http://www.texbrick.com/photo/notes/starshots.pdf

Very helpful. Thank you.
_____________
<  presidio  >
_____________
Wendell (Garret Dillahunt): It's a mess, ain't it, sheriff?
Ed Tom Bell (Tommy Lee Jones): If it ain't, it'll do till the mess gets here.
--No Country for Old Men (2007)

*

Offline SA Bill

  • Mountain Lion
  • *
  • 2001
Re: Article on Night/Star Photography
« Reply #7 on: May 14, 2010, 09:02:51 PM »
Good stuff TJ!  :eusa_clap:
I hope to try some star pics this summer. I'll post the results here if I get anything worth showing.
  Thanks!
    Bill
Bill - In San Antonio

Growing old is mandatory.
Growing up is optional.

*

Offline SA Bill

  • Mountain Lion
  • *
  • 2001
Re: Article on Night/Star Photography
« Reply #8 on: May 15, 2010, 06:50:57 PM »
Interesting tutorial for making star trails...both static and moving...the moving was a new technique to me. Kinda cool.



   Bill
Bill - In San Antonio

Growing old is mandatory.
Growing up is optional.

*

Offline East Texan

  • Diamondback
  • *
  • 338
Re: Article on Night/Star Photography
« Reply #9 on: May 17, 2010, 11:12:17 PM »
Bravo! I just read your article for the first of many times that I will read it.  Well you have no secrets now.  Thanks for sharing all the details.  I think my main problem is my 40D and Sigma 10-20 4.5-5 lens.  I would love to add some of these beautiful images to my portfolio.  Wow. Is that rationalization for an equipment upgrade?  :icon_lol:

If Obama would just increase my Soc Sec payments .............

I'm still going to use what I got and follow your instructions to see what can be done with what I got. :willynilly:

Thanks TJ
Friends don't let friends shoot JPEGs

If it doesn't stick you, sting you, or bite you, then it must be a rock.

*

Offline tjavery

  • Golden Eagle
  • Mountain Lion
  • *
  • 1508
  • foto nut
    • http://www.thomasjavery.com/proj_big_bend
Re: Article on Night/Star Photography
« Reply #10 on: May 18, 2010, 07:52:49 AM »
Thanks, Bill and Don. Good luck with your own shots!

*

Offline MilesOfTexas

  • Golden Eagle
  • Black Bear
  • *
  • 839
    • MilesOfTexas Photography
Re: Article on Night/Star Photography
« Reply #11 on: May 18, 2010, 06:39:42 PM »
Absolutely fantastically written!  Thank you very much for taking the time to put that together.  It needs to be an article in OP!!!

Just a quick question for you.  Have you ever tried a second curtain flash with a gel with any of your night shots?

I am planning on being out at BIBE for Memorial Day weekend, and it appears the moon will be nearly full but setting very early in the night (Fri at 7:16pm, Sat at 8:11pm), so I plan on getting some more night shooting practice while out there.

I also really love the resources you included and have bookmarked them for future use.

There is a sun/moon calculator site that I use almost religiously: http://www.largeformatphotography.info/sunmooncalc/  In the dropdown list of locations, BIBE is available, and provides sun/moon rise/set times and azimuth (I set the options to magnetic north because I use a regular magnetic compass).

Thank you again for all of the awesome nuggets of helpful information!  :eusa_clap:

Jesse
"I have an excellent profession, but I don't enjoy it near as much as I do when I am in the heart of the wilderness, surrounded by marvelous creations, and efforting to capture what I see and feel so I may share it with others."

-Me 09/12/2011

*

Offline tjavery

  • Golden Eagle
  • Mountain Lion
  • *
  • 1508
  • foto nut
    • http://www.thomasjavery.com/proj_big_bend
Re: Article on Night/Star Photography
« Reply #12 on: May 19, 2010, 06:26:38 AM »
Thanks, Jesse, and good luck with your night shots!

I've never tried using a flash, but that is something worth trying. You'll have to be very cautious with the power setting. I can easily blow-out highlights just by a few extra seconds with my LED headlamp. You have to remember that an exposure using ISO 3200 and f/2.0 is extremely sensitive!

*

Offline MilesOfTexas

  • Golden Eagle
  • Black Bear
  • *
  • 839
    • MilesOfTexas Photography
Re: Article on Night/Star Photography
« Reply #13 on: May 19, 2010, 07:14:32 AM »
Whoops, I had a lack of brain activity when I looked at the moon rise/set for Memorial Day weekend.

I'm not sure that I will be able to get anything after looking at it again.

Dusk on those days is at  21:13, but the moonrise is at 22:51 Friday and 22:42.
"I have an excellent profession, but I don't enjoy it near as much as I do when I am in the heart of the wilderness, surrounded by marvelous creations, and efforting to capture what I see and feel so I may share it with others."

-Me 09/12/2011

*

Offline MilesOfTexas

  • Golden Eagle
  • Black Bear
  • *
  • 839
    • MilesOfTexas Photography
Re: Article on Night/Star Photography
« Reply #14 on: May 19, 2010, 07:28:15 AM »
Thanks, Jesse, and good luck with your night shots!

I've never tried using a flash, but that is something worth trying. You'll have to be very cautious with the power setting. I can easily blow-out highlights just by a few extra seconds with my LED headlamp. You have to remember that an exposure using ISO 3200 and f/2.0 is extremely sensitive!

I hope to have some faster glass in the future, but the only thing I have faster than f/2.8 is a 50mm, and that isn't quite wide enough.  I thought about renting the 24mm f/1.4, but Precision Camera doesn't stock it in their rental supply.  I would find it undesireable to increase the exposure time, and I really hate bumping the exposure in post-processing with dark images, but it's better than nothing.  I'm thinking of trying ISO 6400, then use NIK Software's Define to specify only black for noise reduction </shrug>.
"I have an excellent profession, but I don't enjoy it near as much as I do when I am in the heart of the wilderness, surrounded by marvelous creations, and efforting to capture what I see and feel so I may share it with others."

-Me 09/12/2011

 


©COPYRIGHT NOTICE

All photographs and content posted by members are to be considered copyrighted by their respective owners and may not be used for any purposes, commercial or otherwise, without permission.

+-Calendar For Sale

 2019 BigBendChat Calendar on sale now!

Powered by EzPortal

Facebook Comments