November 10, 2012 • Leave a Comment
Last year the Loupe Brothers, Louie and Lester, travelled to Natural Bridges National Monument in Utah. It is one of the darkest places in North America. We ventured out before dark into the monument area to find a good angle to shoot the bridges in darkness. Surprisingly, we could park a few hundred yards from this spot and walk down a path to position ourselves under one of the bridges.
The trick to shooting stars is to be aware that the Earth rotates pretty fast, so any exposure over 30 seconds will cause the stars to streak in the photo. Using a relatively wide lens 24mm-70mm at 24mm and a high ISO - 1600, this 30 second exposure captured the stars pretty well.
LIGHTING THE BRIDGE
Lighting the bridge was pretty simple. We would take turns walking down under the bridge and light "paint" the bridge with a Surefire© military flashlight for only a few seconds while the lens was open. As the moths were attracted to our lights, they were quickly snapped up by bats. Aside from that, no other wild life was obvious, although I am sure they were around somewhere.
The desert Southwest is a magical place. At night, it becomes ethereal and where time seems to stand still. Just staring at the sky in that total darkness and dead silence can be spiritual and transcending. It is calming and serene beyond comprehension. Particles entering the atmosphere streak across the sky, jets and satellites remind one that man has invaded this vast arena. At one point, we notice three glowing objects that seemed to be moving towards us. Confirming with each other that we both actually could see them, we had to chalk it up to our imagination getting away from us. But was it? We will never know.
Nikon D3s Camera
30.0 seconds at ƒ2.8
24mm using 24mm-70mm ƒ2.8 Nikkor lens
Nikon cable release - attached
Gitzo Mountaineer Tripod
Gitzo Ball Head
Star Walk iPhone app
Focalware iPhone app
Surefire Defender flash light
L.L. Bean LED lighted cap
Location: 37º34' 55.67" N 110º00'57.30" W
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