Rodney Campbell's Blog

Lighthouses and Galaxies…

by on Dec.21, 2015, under Life, Photography

Almost a year ago it was my last night here at the Cape Du Couedic Lighthouse in the remote south western corner of Kangaroo Island. The skies were clearing up again revealing the mysteries and wonders of the galaxies above. It was too good an opportunity to let slip by.

Once again I was hoping to do some star trails here under these incredibly dark skies and once again I was hoping the clouds would stay away!…

So straight after shooting a few shots of the rapidly descending crescent moon I head off for the long walk (OK the 2 minute walk :)) from our digs to here.

Note: These images (especially the wider shots) look much better when larger – so click any of the images below to see larger versions in an inline overlay slideshow gallery viewer.

and as the last breath of sunset fades from the sky (9:56PM and now an hour and twenty five minutes after sunset) we can shoot the classic composition of this lighthouse. This time however with some light painting using my torch and the stars and galaxies above.

Sunset Stars

Sunset Stars

NIKON D600 + 14.0 mm f/2.8 @ 14 mm, 30 sec at f/2.8, ISO 1600

Less than ten minutes later and with a change of angle and view it is well and truly dark enough to start shooting in “starry skies” mode (high ISO, wide open Aperture, 500 rule for Shutter).

Galactic Lines

Galactic Lines

NIKON D600 + 14.0 mm f/2.8 @ 14 mm, 30 sec at f/2.8, ISO 3200

As you can see here my thoughts for composition were to try and line up the diagonal core of the Milky Way with the light of the lighthouse itself. The shooting star was an unplanned bonus 🙂

By a quarter past ten I felt it was dark enough to start my star trails frames so I relocated back to the main path to the lighthouse for a more southerly view to the lighthouse. I took a few more static star images with some light painting of the lighthouse and foreground to use as part of my final base image for the star trails.

Here is my favourite of those single frames.

Galaxies Above

Galaxies Above

NIKON D600 + 14.0 mm f/2.8 @ 14 mm, 30 sec at f/2.8, ISO 3200

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