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Re: night sky pictures

Posted: Thu Jun 18, 2015 10:11 pm
by kimo
vonmackle wrote:Uh oh, this is my third post in a row to this thread. Does anybody else have any shots to contribute so I don't feel like a ball hog?
Ok, I play.

It's 3 AM on Haleakala. Goodbye Mr Moonlight. I get an hour of darkness before astronomical twilight starts to lighten the sky.

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A steady stream of visitors drive up the road to the summit. I turn off and find a quiet overlook all for myself, away from lights, noise, and people, where I can stand alone on the crater rim and enjoy the moment. There is no wind - the place is still. Complete silence. And I stand there in total awe. The Milky Way rises high above me.

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The moment felt giant - like dawn of time giant.

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The call of a wild bird splits the silence with the grace of a samurai's sword. It isn't long before twilight blue splits the sky. I sit back on my rocky perch and count cinder cones as they emerge from the dark.

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Moments like this make everything right.

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Re: night sky pictures

Posted: Mon Jun 22, 2015 8:49 am
by kimo
Took this at a Glenn Randall night photography workshop in RMNP last Saturday night. Some may be familiar with Glenn's beautiful 14er photography that is featured in CFI publications. He is a master and a really nice guy, and I'm glad I took a workshop with him.

This was taken with a Samyang 14mm @ f2.8, 30 sec, ISO 6400, single image, taken on a hazy night from the Forest Canyon overlook on Trail Ridge Rd, rough edit in Lightroom 5. Longs Peak is at lower right of photo. He taught us how to remove the light streaks from airplanes using Photoshop, but I don't have Photoshop and I'm not big on removing elements from photos anyways. It was a nice evening out.

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Re: night sky pictures

Posted: Tue Jun 23, 2015 6:15 am
by vonmackle
Nice stuff, Kimo. Your images and words remind me of all those great trip reports you used to write (hint, hint). Are you stating that Glenn is a really nice guy because he didn't drag you up Bison into a seemingly endless raging thunderstorm? :oops:

It's good to see that the Milky Way is still visible from the park despite the light pollution and the terrible haze we've been having lately.

Re: night sky pictures

Posted: Tue Jun 23, 2015 8:12 am
by MtnHub
I wholeheartedly agree! Those sky/star shots are amazing, Kimo! But I especially thrive on your landscapes. The one after "Moments like this make everything right" --- WOW! Is that really in Hawaii?

I also really miss your trip reports (double hint!)

And Cameron, your 11-Mile shot is fabulous too!

Thanks to everyone for sharing their special images! I love'm! :-D

Re: night sky pictures

Posted: Wed Jun 24, 2015 8:46 am
by kimo
Cameron, at that workshop Glenn didn't pimp his own photography, didn't brag about his mountaineering accomplishments, and didn't pressure the group for follow-on sales or social media "likes" as if photography is a popularity game. That's not a game I play. So, yes, Glenn was a heck of a nice guy at that workshop. He taught us what we needed to know and cut out the bullcrap.

I want you to know that you're a nice guy too even though you tried to kill us.


And Doug, you are such a kind soul, I'll take one meaningful comment from you over 1000 likes on Facebook any day. I hit a motivational low in the my photography shortly after the forum wilderness debacle a couple years back. Around that time I started having camera problems that Nikon wouldn't fix until slapped with a class action lawsuit from a bunch of angry owners. I just got tired of people and things. But one thing stayed the same - we kept on hiking. Now photography is becoming fun again so I thought I'd share some of it here.

As for writing another trip report...not sure. We'll see what the future holds. But I do very much appreciate your sentiment. And yes, that is Hawaii - the island of Maui in particular. Haleakala is one of nature's special places. WOW sums the place up nicely.

Re: night sky pictures

Posted: Wed Jun 24, 2015 4:17 pm
by asarsam
First attempt at a night lapse with the GoPro 4 Silver:


Re: night sky pictures

Posted: Fri Jul 24, 2015 11:02 pm
by cpb145
I think I'm starting to get the hang of this a little more...

Here are a few favs I grabbed at the ancient bristlecone pine forest in CA.

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Re: night sky pictures

Posted: Sun Aug 30, 2015 2:12 pm
by vonmackle
On several occasions I have had people who have never actually seen the Milky Way ask me if my images of it are what it really looks like. The easy answer is "no, it just kind looks like a colorless cloud of light in the sky", but in reality it's kind of a difficult question to answer. The two main problems are: 1) we can't see color very well in the dark, and 2) we can't sit there and absorb 20 seconds or so worth of light in order to form a more detailed image of what we are looking at. The camera can do both, so it can produce Milky Way images with color and detail we simply cannot see with the naked eye. This leaves a huge spectrum of possible interpretations when processing the image. Do you try to process the image to reflect what you saw with the naked eye, or go with something more like what the camera saw? I have attempted to process images with a 'naked eye' perspective in the past without much success, but I recently saw some amazing Milky Way photos in Glenn Randall's 'Sunrise from the Summit' book processed in this manner that motivated me to give it another try. Here are a couple different versions of a picture I took of the Milky Way over Chimney Rock a couple years ago. The first is one I recently processed to give a more 'naked eye' perspective, the other is the the way I processed it a couple years ago. I'd probably process the second version a bit differently today, but you get the picture. I honestly could go either way, so I probably won't limit myself to one particular style. Which do you prefer?

ImageMilky Way Over Chimney Rock

ImageMilky Way Over Chimney Rock

Re: night sky pictures

Posted: Sun Aug 30, 2015 2:28 pm
by Mark A Steiner
My first impression is the "naked eye" image seems to be a compromise, but the quality is still good. What is needed is more "naked eye" images in this thread for viewers to develop a visual estimate of what the eye sees versus the camera. For now, I believe the camera image is superior especially in color presentation.

Or, simply start a separate thread with images comparing naked eye with camera, side by side, or up and down. Thanks.

Re: night sky pictures

Posted: Mon Aug 31, 2015 8:49 pm
by mattpayne11
A selfie from American Basin.
RE: camera vs. eye - the human eye is not really able to see the color nor detail in the Milky Way due to the way the rods and cones in the eye work; however, you can still make out good detail in very dark sky with the naked eye, just not nearly as much...

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In cosmic wonder by Matt Payne, on Flickr

Re: night sky pictures

Posted: Mon Aug 31, 2015 9:54 pm
by Mark A Steiner
Matt: Please provide a couple of details about your fine selfie post; the approximate time of day (night) it was, and if moonlight was included in the available light.

Thanks. Great shot.

Re: night sky pictures

Posted: Wed Sep 02, 2015 9:23 am
by mattpayne11
Mark A Steiner wrote:Matt: Please provide a couple of details about your fine selfie post; the approximate time of day (night) it was, and if moonlight was included in the available light.

Thanks. Great shot.
Sure thing -

I'm pretty sure this was shot at around 11:30 PM - the quarter moon was still visible to the right of the scene, on the horizon (just above an un-named peak in the basin). The moon is what lit my face and the ground. I did use a second exposure with the exact same composition at a lower ISO from about an hour beforehand for the foreground also, and blended them.