Sunday, August 26, 2012

Night Sky Time-Lapse


Music credit:  "Moon Rocks", Talking Heads
So I set up my camera and tripod outside last night, prayed they would still be there in the morning and that the wind or a coyote wouldn't knock them over, and set up the camera to take one photo every 10 minutes. Each photo was a 3-minute exposure (other settings:  F 3.5, ISO 400, 17mm focal length). I pointed the camera south towards Joshua Tree, and let the camera click away from about 11 PM to 5:30 AM, resulting in about 38 photos. Pick a star in the YouTube clip and see if you can follow it!

As an add-on to this post, I got to thinking, what would it look like if I layered all 38 photos? Well, let's see... here's what a single photo looks like:
With 3-minute exposures, the stars lose their sharp focus and become oblong blobs because of their motion. Here's what it looks like if you layer all the photos on top of each other (remember - 10-minute interval between photos, hence the star movement looks like dashes).
Not the most beautiful of night skies, but an interesting effect! If you pick a single star and count the dashes, there should be about 38 (the number of photos  I layered in Photoshop, which totally crashed my computer!!). Linking to: 
and 

24 comments:

  1. I like each one of these.
    The time-lapse looks a horde of fireflys all going in the same direction :)
    Glad the camera/tripod stayed intact.

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  2. the fabric stitching of the overlay is awesome! as neat as any loom could have produced. :)

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  3. Cool video!
    I really like the Talking Heads, haha, great music choice for the time lapse.

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  4. So creative! I don't think I'd be able to sleep worrying about my camera. That overlay is amazing.

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  5. we have just come back from the bush and beautiful night skies full of the milky way.your photographs capture the always present sense of the moving planet

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  6. This is awesome! One of these days I'm gonna have to try this. I love the effect of all the photos together as one. Cool cool cool!

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  7. This is an interesting way to patch together the evening sky. I have to laugh at Photoshop's unsurprising antics. It was worth the effort.

    We did some skywatching recently during the Perseid meteor shower. We had a nice view of the Milky Way but the shower didn't keep us up long enough to see it at the peak; it was a chilly evening in the Northwest.

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  8. Very cool. There's no way I'd be able to do that on my computer, it can barely handle three photos at a time!

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  9. That's a cool video, and I like one single photo than the layers one!

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  10. Oh THAT is WAY too cool... I'm SO impressed! Thank you for sharing on Weekly Top Shot #45!

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  11. Well, actually I think this IS beautiful! This is something I want to try.

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  12. fantastic! love how you captured the photos and your layered piece is amazing!

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  13. That was amazingly cool. Loved it!!!

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  14. Interesting, you combined the two techniques I had this week, time lapse at Martha's musings and star trails at around California.

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    1. That was trippy !!! You have my attention ; )

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  15. I really like your time-lapse photos. I'm going to have to do some experimenting in that area.

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  16. Great idea for a photo shoot! I like the "movie".

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  17. How wild is this?! In the best kind of way! Gorgeous!

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