Astro Pano 2 V1 3000px

Crago Observatory, Bowen Mountain

“Somewhere, something incredible is waiting to be known” – Carl Sagan

Camera/Lens: Nikon D800E, Nikkor 24-70mm f2.8

Post processing: 2 rows x 10 image vertical stitch, Topaz denoise, minor levels adjustments and colour correction

Feeling a little uninspired lately with images of Sydney being so overshot and being stuck at home doing domestic chores, so I set myself a challenge. This is my first attempt at both astrophotography and multi panel stitching on the digital medium as opposed to the simplicity of a single panoramic image on a 617 film camera.

With the kids at Nanna’s I discovered this observatory on the outskirts of Sydney and thought it would make an interesting image with the milky way above it. Walking through the bush on a moonless night was a little unnerving but necessary to capture the stars without moonlight or too much city light affecting the image. I also discovered that multiple image stitching is great on a slow processing computer – it gives you time to dust, vacuum, mop and pick the kids up from school!

This was a great learning exercise. Its amazing what you can do these days on a digital camera and Photoshop. This is far removed from the old days of 35mm film. I find the process of shooting on film with a 617 camera wonderful but the possibilities and versatility of digital cameras is absolutely amazing.

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