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So I'm trying to get star trails when...


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...the Police come rushing in!

space_cops_by_chrisdonohoe-d4hi9vk.jpg

SO...tonight was interesting! I chose a location to capture 1 hour of exposures. I planned to get a mix of star trails and cars driving by on the road. Just something new.

What happened turned out to be more interesting! The police arrived as a "suspicious character" was sitting on a bench in the dark...Me! The police chaps were very friendly, and discovered I was just taking photos. We chatted briefly about photography and such, and apologised for getting in the way of my shots! Really I was excited to see what I had captured.

Upon flicking through my shots to find the frames, I was astonished to see an apparent 'lighting bolt'! This in fact was a policeman walking over to me with his torch.

The scene was lit up a blue/purple colour from the police car lights.

One 3 minute shot was removed due to the police car headlights washing out most of the shot as they turned around. This caused the small gap in the start trails...but was worth it for an interesting overall effect I think!

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Cool shot, I hope you managed to get your mix of star and car trails in the end.

I was on the Quantocks Sunday night setting up a time exposure when the same thing happened to me, only the camera was pointing away from the cops so I missed out on the wiggly lines. After a brief chat and blowing my night vision with their spot light they left just as it clouded over, so not a great night photo-wise.

I guess it's an occupational hazard to those of us who lurk in the dark with cameras and telescopes. :icon_confused:

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Thanks for all your comments. It was very lucky that all this happened in front of the camera. I think once in a while we capture something unique...and the other 99.9% of the time we miss it!

Edited by Donny
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WOW - that is an amazing shot. A heck of a lot better than a set of star trails, too :-)

Where are you based? Some Police Force's would LOVE to get a copy of your photograph. My wife used to work (4 years) for Surrey Police and I'm pretty sure if they had a photo like this, they'd probably pin it up on the wall or publish it in their staff magazine.

Top shot!

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Where are you based? Some Police Force's would LOVE to get a copy of your photograph. My wife used to work (4 years) for Surrey Police and I'm pretty sure if they had a photo like this, they'd probably pin it up on the wall or publish it in their staff magazine.

I'm in Northamptonshire. Yeah I might just send it over ;)

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blinding shot!

I have had the police rang on me a few times now, begs the question,

had these people bothered to spend a couple of seconds to see that i was actually taking photos/stargazing hence all the equipment around me, would they still have been so hasty and rang the police?

People i think see us as an odd bunch and seem to fear the very sight of a camera or scope on a late night. If it were Nine in the morning no-one would bat an eyelid i'm betting.

I have lost count of the amount of times i have stood around in public places, outside people houses, shops n churches late at night with no equipment looking even more dodgy than your average astronomer....... does anyone call the police then? Not a chance!

Sorry to rant but a lot of effort goes to field work as you all know, I guess if we all came away with a capture like Donny's it wouldn't be so bad.

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I have lost count of the amount of times i have stood around in public places, outside people houses, shops n churches late at night with no equipment looking even more dodgy than your average astronomer....... does anyone call the police then? Not a chance!

At the risk of sounding like one of those busy-bodies we all hate, dark I ask what you were doing...!? :)

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