pollution isn’t always a bad thing…

star trails

…light pollution that is.

It seems like it’s taken no time at all to go from daytime temperatures in the mid-90’s, where the nighttime temperature cools down to the mid-80’s, to full blown fall weather, with the nighttime temperatures dipping into the 40’s. This is actually about my favorite time of year. So with a new season, comes a new thing I’m finding to do with my camera… long exposures of the sky at night, showing star trails as the earth rotates.

The main problem I’m facing is finding locations where I can go and shoot that don’t have so much light pollution that it obliterates the stars. Usually shots like this seem to work best esthetically for me when there is something on the horizon to give some perspective for the image, some relief coming from the landscape, a building, something. But even out in the country, it’s difficult getting away from the ubiquitous streetlights and security lights anywhere there’s a barn or house or parking lot. And very few of the country roads around here have shoulders to pull the car onto.

After about 30 minutes of driving around last night we found a spot to try. There was still a lot of light pollution low in the sky to the north, back towards the city. Instead of trying to shoot around it, by pointing the camera up, I decided to try and use the light to my advantage. I think it worked, although the stars aren’t nearly as visible in the photo as they were outside.

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~ by Dave on 09/16/07.

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