I have been working on my flash photography lately and was out in the backyard trying a few things out while the sun was setting and the light was fading. We had our little guy out there and we decided to play around a bit tossing him in the air. We were able to get a few good shots of him.
On the second night out at Lake Nockamixon, I went out much later due to issues with passing air traffic. I waited until after midnight and then proceeded back to the same spot I was at the night before. It was pretty lonely the first night, but on the second night at this late hour, there was absolutely not a soul around. The owls and ducks were the only thing breaking the crisp silence in the air. Just as expected, I didn’t have any issues with light trails from passing aircraft. I have posted a shot from the first night with the aircraft traffic in the image for comparison.
For this shot I used a 24 mm lens and exposed 40 frames at 30 seconds each and used Photoshop to create the star trails, each image being on a separate layer (the first shot I used a 16mm). This is the same as taking a 30-40 min exposure but without all the noise from the sensor heating up during long exposures. The moon was so bright, it lit up the landscape like it was daytime. It was a great night, and I learned a few things trying this technique which I will use during the next attempt. Hope you enjoy…
This past weekend I visited my family in PA for the holiday. I spent two nights at Lake Nockamixon State Park which is only a short drive from where I grew up. The sky was clear all night with a full moon illuminating the landscape. It was a little strange being out there all alone for several hours, with only a few ducks and an owl or two making any noise. The first night I was out from 9pm until midnight but wasn’t happy with the results of my star trail composites as there were numerous light trails from passing planes. I make the composites by taking several 20-30 sec exposures, one right after the other and then combine them in Photoshop to create the same effect as when you leave your shutter open for a long period of time to record the earths rotation.
Since the conditions were right for the blended exposures, I took several different individual shots. On the first night, there was a fisherman there late with me, trying his luck with the full moon light. I composed the shot to show him with his light torch on his head, his pickup truck and the clear skies above. The sun had just set about 2 hours prior to me setting up for the shot. As you can see, the full moon washes out a good deal of the stars normally visible on a dark night. This makes it a little easier to discern the constellations. Notice the constellation Orion just to the right and above the fishermans pickup truck. Shortly after this, a group of about 30 people that were out for a night time stroll from the nearby campsites converged on the area to get a glimpse of the lake at night. This is a single exposure for 25 seconds at iso 400.