Space: The Final Frontier. A nightâ€™s sky filled with new subjects, new photo possibilities, or maybe even more appropriately, new challenges. It may be an entirely new area of exploration for your photography skills but weâ€™re here to make things a bit more straightforward, and a little bit easier to jump in to.
First off, what equipment is needed for Astrophotography?
*For added benefits, though not necessary, smartphone Apps or Star Charts will make locating and choosing subjects much easier. And, intervalometers or cable releases will help fight camera movement and allow for a wider range of timing/sequencing of shots.
With this set of equipment youâ€™re ready to start shooting the universe beyond our atmosphere! Attach your lens, mount your camera on to your tripod, and locate the Milky Way using your Star Charts if not already identifiable.
Now let's start shooting:
But what settings create the
exposure for Astrophotography?! Well, unfortunately, thatâ€™s not quite as set-in-stone as the setup for your shoot. A good, general use setup would start at an ISO Setting of 3200, a Shutter Speed of 30 seconds, and an Aperture of at least F2.8 (if possible).
From this point forward youâ€™re shooting, viewing, adjusting, and reshooting. Be careful not to boost the ISO up too high or you wonâ€™t be able to fight noise/grain in your photos. Equally, setting your ISO too low may result in needing to lengthen your shutter speed too much, causing â€œstar trailsâ€ to appear on your photos. This is a balancing act you will no doubt have to play with while trying to perfectly capture the night sky, though repetition and practice will help give you references of what settings worked previously.
Taking the best exposure possible is going to lighten your workload when working with your photos in post. RAW files come out fairly flat so there will be some amount of post-production editing for almost all of your Astrophotography. Be sure not to overdo your editing in post or the grain/noise you tried to reduce while shooting will flood back to your photos, LESS MORE!