Give a Girl a Laser

We planned another night of astrophotography (night time shooting of the stars) trying to build on my previous experiments of capturing the Milky Way Galaxy by getting better quality images. I wanting to try a technique called Photo Staking, to increase the sharpness of the image, and reduce the noise from shooting with very high ISO settings. We also had some fun too, bringing a laser point and flash light to the shoot, with the hopes a capturing some awesome light painting scenes. Once the Moon set behind the mountains if the Kitsumkalum Valley, we were set.

So right off, the above image is not photo-stacked. This is right out of camera, after converting it from RAW to PNG format. Using a 14mm wide lens, at f1.4 with a 15 sec. exposure, and ISO 4000. I let the exposure go as normal, then for a a couple of seconds, I used a flash-light to light up the foreground. I will photo-stack this scene later on this week, and if it looks awesome, I post it. I did a few shots like this, looking at different positions of the sky with the landscape in it. Hopefully some of them will look great.

You know the old saying, “give a girl a laser and…” Well, laser girl had some fun too. After a couple tries, adjusting the shutter and ISO, laser girl went on to light paint her name on the cliffs of Kalum Lake, across from the Look Out. She had a blast. You can see her name, in amongst the red swiggles painted on the rocks with laser light. I believe this was our fourth attempt tonight. Not bad for just trying this out for the first time with a laser pointer. And by the way, the pointer meets the new Federal Laws on owning and possession of a laser.

And that is me, the ghost of Thomasso, playing the highway, in the middle of the night, doing ridiculous poses for the camera. I had fun too. In this shot, the shutter was set to 30 seconds, ISO 400, on my Sony A77. So I let the camera go, and Suzette held the flash-light, turning it on for just a second, while I moved into the position. Then she turned on the light for a second, then off again, as I moved to another position. We did this until the shutter time was up. It was the last shot of the night.

I should point out again that none of these photos were touched up in post editing. These are as they are, right out of the camera. I only converted them from RAW to PNG format. This session was, more or less, an experiment trying new techniques with my camera’s long exposure for photo stacking, which I was start sometime later next week when I do the post editing. Until then, have a wonderful night!

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