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Everything posted by Nightfly

  1. Late August is a favorite time to photograph the Milky Way, nights set in early and the bugs are all but gone in the cool night air. This was a "quick" single 92 second exposure using my Pentax K-5 IIs and Samyang 16mm f/2 @ f/3.2 using ISO 3200. Processed in Photoshop. A bit over-processed but I was getting out some nice details. in the outskirts of the star clouds. Note the crisscrossing satellites in Aquila. Thanks for looking! Milky Way - Detailed by Nightfly Photographic, on Flickr
  2. Thank you all. It was fairly difficult work and I was pleasantly surprised that all frames came out as expected. Guiding for each frame was corrected manually and there was some issues with nighttime insects, so I am glad I did not bump the system during exposures. Aircraft was a concern and several exposures had to be capped during their presence around the field. Fireflies (or lightning bugs) seemed to like where I was pointed! I thought I missed a few of them, but the films did not record any occurrences. Overall it was great fun and I am hoping for good weather for another round. Color this time. We'll see. The current dark run is about over. Late August should be promising. It's good to have the strength and energy to get back at it. It has been good therapy. Looks like years of imaging to come. Thanks again. Jim
  3. Greetings SGL members. It has been some time since I have posted any new film images. It is true that I have been having a fling with a mistress named DSLR, but my heart is in these images done in the way I learned thirty years ago. My last imaging session according to my Log book was October 11, 2012. I had just finished a roll of Superia that night and I almost never returned. I began experimenting with digital. It was fun and productive but I missed my old film images. I was delayed further about one year ago. Without warning I suffered a severe heart attack. It was quite the scene. I was a goner for sure if not for the help of some cracker jack EMT's that kept CPR going. I was gone for over 15 minutes. The ER got me back and the chopper flight to an emergency heart catheterization lab placed a stent and after several months of rehab I am back and good as new! I had one great session in late June. For several back-to-back nights the weather cooperated enough to image with a new lens and I wanted to share with you all. The images below are taken with the Pentax 67 and the 400mm F/4 SMC Takumar lens. I used apertures of f/4.8 or f/5.6 for 40-50 minute exposures on Fuji Neopan Acros 100 black and white negative film. You can read about my project plan and inspiration here: http://nightflyphotography.blogspot.com/2014/07/recapturing-ee-barnards-legac... You can view the images and read about them here: http://nightflyphotography.blogspot.com/2014/07/selected-regions-of-milky-way... Here is a legend to the several images taken in June. Pictures at Eleven by Nightfly Photographic, on Flickr Below are some of the results. These are preliminary images that were scanned rather hastily, but these results look promising. I need to go back and remaster each image, something that will take me awhile. A good task for winter when I am shut indoors. Messier 24 Region by Nightfly Photographic, on Flickr Region of Dark Lanes in Ophiuchus by Nightfly Photographic, on Flickr The Southern Scutum Star Cloud by Nightfly Photographic, on Flickr The Dark Nebulae Around Theta Ophiuchi by Nightfly Photographic, on Flickr Apologies for the smaller sized image here: The Great Star Cloud in Scutum by Nightfly Photographic, on Flickr Messier 22 Region in Sagittarius by Nightfly Photographic, on Flickr The Great Sagittarius Star Cloud by Nightfly Photographic, on Flickr Thanks for looking. I hope you enjoyed them. Jim
  4. Access to dark skies, in my front yard no less, is a tremendous advantage to good photography and imaging on any clear night a simple joy I have grown accustomed to. The move to digital for my work is a natural evolution and I am enjoying the results. That being said, I am planning a project with a new lens (top secret) and medium format film. I simply have way too much equipment and experience to abandon it. One foot in each domain. Jim
  5. Thank you all for the kind remarks. Sky and Telescope selected it as Editor's Pick this week. http://www.skyandtelescope.com/online-gallery/milky-way-veiled-airglow/#sthash.KJAKULRf.gbpl Good to have successful images. Jim
  6. Below is an example of airglow and the Milky Way early Saturday morning as revealed by long exposure photography.I noted it visually. It appeared as large pale white patches of light against a darker skyRead more...... http://nightflyphotography.blogspot.com/2014/05/airglow.htmlTwo minutes exposure @ F/2.8 using the Samyang 16mm f/2 on my Pentax K-5 IIs at ISO 1250. Camera was driven equatorially.The Milky Way Veiled in Airglow by Nightfly Photographic, on Flickr
  7. From what I have seen the image circle does increase much by f/8, but likely not enough for full frame. There would be no fast lens advantage as well. I will have to put on my 35mm film camera and test this idea.
  8. Thank you Michael. I hope to be able to do both. My heart is still analog, but if I can render the sky as my mind sees it, then digital might do it. I am going to try. Jim
  9. Thank you all for the comments. While it is not as ideal as I would have liked it to be, the 16mm f/2 is a workable solution for wide-angle work and can take screw in filters where many lenses like the popular Samyang / Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 cannot. Sharpness is very good and gives me the full frame 24mm equivalency I was looking for with only moderate barrel distortion that is easily correctable. I'll be posting more work with it as the year continues. Thanks again. Jim
  10. First light for the Samyang 16mm f/2. My first copy had decentering issues and was returned for another copy. This one looks to be good as it passes the "star test". All images were taken with the Pentax K-5 IIs DSLR. Vignetting was not a problem at f/2.8, but at f/2 was moderately visible. Coma at pixel peeping levels was moderate as well through all the fast apertures. I am pretty happy with the lens, it is very inexpensive and performed like lenses costing twice as much. I am looking forward to using this lens throughout the coming summer season. I hope you enjoy the pics, the weather and sky were very good the other morning and it was good timing as I had just received the lens the evening prior. This is a single tracked 80 second exposure @ f/2.8 and ISO 1600. Single tracked 70 seconds f/2.8 ISO 1600 Single tracked 80 seconds f/2.8 ISO 1600
  11. I just got done reading Sheehan's book, The Immortal Fire Within. A tremendous read and have not forgiven myself for not reading it sooner, but it is rather expensive for a paperback. Worth every penny now that I have completed it. I have a very special spot for Barnard as an observer and photographer of dark nebulae. Like Barnard, I still manually guide long exposure emulsion with nothing but a clock drive and a guiding eyepiece for hours at a time, mostly with portrait lenses on medium format film. Barnard's work has inspired and continues to do so. After reading the biography I certainly have greater appreciation for him. I'm the number one fan of the man from Tennessee.
  12. Thank you. I'll be up early mornings in late February just to get a taste again!
  13. Hello Luke, Thank you. Yes that's the one. Still works great. I hope it clears for you soon. It's a lovely time of year here. Jim
  14. A quick shot from across the pond in Sullivan, Maine, USA . She is sure beautiful on the autumn evenings. Our Moon 13 October 2013 12:49:00 UT Permanently mounted vintage 1983 Meade 2080 @ f/6.3 with Pentax K-01 1/500 sec @ ISO 400 Lunar tracking via Vogel Digitrack II Quartz Controlled Drive Corrector. Luna: Our Moon by Nightfly Photography, on Flickr
  15. Very nice! Been dodging clouds here as well. Glad you pulled off this grand shot while you could!
  16. Saying goodbye to the summer Milky Way on a late September evening.A composite of four brief exposures stitched in Microsoft ICE. Enjoy.Jim Summer's Swan Song by Nightfly Photography, on Flickr
  17. Nightfly


    The Great Starcloud of Sagittarius over the ocean looks incredible here. Wonderful image !
  18. Thank you Mark. I love the Barnard objects. I almost never got to see them under light polluted skies, now they are obvious. Living large under the dark skies of Maine.
  19. Thank you for the kind remarks. It was a decent morning to shoot, but twilight starts early allowing only a few hours to capture images. I got a few more to post later. Thanks again! Jim
  20. From this morning. Finally got some clear skies after weeks of clouds. Altair is at the frames edge with Tarazed being the guide to Barnard 142 / 143 which is easily seen in binoculars and sometimes the unaided eye under a dark sky. Pentax K-01 with SMC Pentax 67 200mm f/4 @ f/5.6 376 seconds @ ISO 800 Camera / lens riding atop 8" SCT. Thanks for looking...... Barnard's E by Nightfly Photography, on Flickr
  21. Thank you Black_Cloud. I appreciate the nice comment ! Skies are just amazing, right down to the horizon !
  22. Thank you again. Great feedback. I'm grateful. Understand Andrew. Yes, the sky is shifted south from your perspective. I'm at 45 deg N. so everything is ~5 deg higher ! Laserjock, that is quite low ! I'm so glad to see that this gem is not below your horizon! Look sharp!
  23. I highly recommend this area to image. I know some of you living in the UK are starting to have the perpetual twilight for the summer months. The nights get short here too, but I get at least a few hours even in late June. The time is now, but you have to be out early in the AM to get these gems. It is difficult on a work night, but I just got in from an early morning session of these same areas and hope to post soon. Thank you all for the kind words and comments.
  24. Thanks guys. Yea, believe it or not, this was my first digital exposure of this are of the Milky Way. Some of you may be familiar with my work with film, something of a holdover from the past, but I like the aesthetics of film. That being said, I believe there will be much work with digital in my future. Fun stuff. Just 60 seconds. Plenty of exposure at ISO 800 under dark skies. Enjoy Jim
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