night shots

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by sabenemmons, Aug 13, 2004.

  1. sabenemmons

    sabenemmons TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2004
    Messages:
    48
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Indiana
    I really need some advice on doing long exposer night shots (star trials - lightning and the like) I have no idea how and was really just looking for some guidence.
    saben
     
  2. drlynn

    drlynn TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2003
    Messages:
    722
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    In the Basement
    For star trails you need a wide angle lens. Set it to its smallest aperture (eg f/22). You will need a locking shutter release also, and make sure your camera has B(bulb) as an option for shutter speed.

    Mount the camera on a tripod, compose your shot, focus and make sure your aperture is at its smallest and the shutter is set to bulb. Press and lock the shutter release. The time of your exposure depends on how long you want the trails. A 15 minute exposure will give short trails. You can go for like 4 hours or more to get trails that completely cross the frame.

    For lightning, you can use a similar technque but hold cardboard in front of the lens until a strike starts. Or you can set the shutter to 15-30 seconds and hope you get a strike in the frame. Shooting lightning generally will take at least a roll or two to make sure you get some good ones. Lightning shots especially take a lot of practice and patience.
     
  3. sabenemmons

    sabenemmons TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2004
    Messages:
    48
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Indiana
    thanks
    very helpful
     
  4. molested_cow

    molested_cow No longer a newbie, moving up!

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2004
    Messages:
    3,628
    Likes Received:
    460
    Location:
    Here N There
    300mm at 4 min of shutter time.

    [​IMG]

    Wide angle lens means you get less light concentration, means you need a lot longer shutter exposure. Furthermore, the trails will be less distinct.

    So it's up to you on what kind of composition you are looking for.
     
  5. Cuervo79

    Cuervo79 Guest

    on a related note, how far from Ufban lights do you have to be in order to get star trails??? does it really matter?
     
  6. malachite

    malachite Heavily Medicated For Your Protection

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2004
    Messages:
    975
    Likes Received:
    6
    Location:
    Not in Arizona anymore
    If you can see the stars, you'll get star trails. If you can see the city glow off in the horizon, you'll see that on film too, even if it's not in the frame. There are exceptions to everything though but in general, get as far away from town as you can get for exposures that are going to be an hour or more for star trails.
     

Share This Page