Friday, April 10, 2009

Star Trail Photography

Anytime a friend and I are talking and the subject of astrophotography comes up I'm always asked how to shoot star trail photos. As far as astronomical photography is concerned, star trails are the easiest to do. But trying to explain to someone "how" to do it is often times more complicated.
While perusing through my list of forums that I regularly check I came across what has to be the best article I've seen that covers how to take great star trail photos. I felt compelled to post it here just so I have a record of the link for future reference. So follow this link to and before you know it you too will be taking great star trail photos.
Taking Great Star Trail Photos
Of course it's going to help if you have the right tools and are comfortable shooting in manual mode.
The shot I'm showing here is one of my personal favorites taken during the August 2007 Persied meteor shower. The camera was setup on a sturdy tripod facing North, bulb mode, f/2.8, 16mm, ISO200 for 20 minutes.
Clicking on the photo will open a new window and take you to my gallery of other shots taken during this same trip to Star Hill Inn in New Mexico.
Sadly the economy has taken it's toll on Star Hill Inn and it is no longer in business. One thing to note about taking 20 minute exposures, you are not going to do it from downtown Las Vegas! You need really dark skies so bundle up and head for the desert or wherever you can get so that you see no effect of city lights.