Last evening was a crystal-clear, windless night so I grabbed a couple of lenses, my D4 and a remote timer and stepped outside to grab a few shots of the night sky from our driveway. I haven’t done much night photography in the last year or so and it took a little experimenting for the first few frames to eliminate the star trails and get the focus point right on the stars. Hint: use a max-zoomed live view, manual focus, and then tape the focus ring to the lens barrel once you’re satisfied that the stars are sharp enough. Rule of thumb for exposure time – in general I use the “500 rule” – 500 / focus length of the lens to get the maximum exposure time (in my case 24mm and 14mm, so 20 sec and 30 sec respectively). I was pushing for 30-second exposures at 24mm, but at that exposure the images/stars were showing star trail motion blur due to the earth’s rotation. Photos taken in Le Côty, Neuchâtel. Click on image for larger view.
A Few Astro Pics