Night Moves with the Fuji X-T1 in West Texas

Started Sep 1, 2014 | Discussions thread
Jim Radcliffe
OP Jim Radcliffe Forum Pro • Posts: 11,783
Re: Fabulous

Ergo607 wrote:

Really jaw dropping beautiful images. I like the first oak tree best, but I would be very proud with any of this images.

Speaking of which, if I ever wanted to this, how do I start?

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Marc, this is so easy to do.

You will need the following...  Most important is to find a location without a lot of light pollution and no clouds or a bright moon.  The Moon will wash out all the stars.  Best to shoot when the moon is new or has set.  Locating the Milky Way by eye will require a dark sky area.. but you can use an ap such as Star Chart to find it by moving your smartphone across the horizon.. it will show you what is there.. even if you can't see it with the naked eye.

  1. Good sturdy tripod
  2. Fast lens... wide angle preferred.. these were all shot with the 18mm f/2.0 but even the 18-55 works well and it is f/2.8
  3. ISO setting should be around 1000 to 1600, depending on the light.
  4. Exposure time will be in the range of 15 to 30 seconds.. you will have to experiment.
  5. Set your camera to Manual. Set your ISO, set your shutter speed and set your lens to infinity.
  6. Turn OFF and manual focus aids such as focus peaking as it will drive you nuts at night.. all you have to do is set the lens to infinity.. you may wish to tape it so it does not move by accident, some use a wide rubber band for this.. you just want to make sure the focus point does not come off of infinity.
  7. You should also use an electronic cable release (they're about $15) if you don't have a cable release then set the camera timer to 2 seconds and press the shutter the camera will take the shot 2 seconds later.
  8. Start shooting and make adjustments to the time of the exposure... increasing ISO will increase noise...
  9. You can shoot JPG but RAW is better.
  10. Bring them into lightroom and make your adjustments. That's all you need to do.

You may wish to tinker with the White Balance in the field but if you are shooting RAW you can get the color where you want it in post.

Most important of all... have fun... there will be a bit of frustration at first if you have never done this but it doesn't take long to figure out what adjustments you will need for a particular scene.

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Jim Radcliffe
The ability to 'see' the shot is more important than the gear used to capture it.

 Jim Radcliffe's gear list:Jim Radcliffe's gear list
Fujifilm X-E2 Fujifilm X-T1 Fujifilm X-H1
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