At some point in time, almost every photographer will get the itch to try their hand at astrophotography. It could be that image of the Milky Way or an aurora that inspires us to bring our cameras out in the middle of a clear night to photograph the stars. Josh Katz created this tutorial for newbie astrophotographers who may not live in an ideal region for capturing the night skies.
Katz provides clear explanations of how to choose a lens and other helpful equipment. He discusses how to pick the right location, time of night, and camera settings. Wide-angle lenses are generally best for astrophotography in order to capture the largest area of sky possible. Since cameras do not autofocus well on dim objects like stars, he recommends switching to manual focus and finding your camera’s infinity setting so that you can consistently produce sharp images. Including a foreground element is key to avoiding a boring composition, and incorporating light painting in your long exposure will add dimension and detail to your foreground. Katz finishes the tutorial with an overview of how he edits his night sky images in Lightroom.
Astrophotography can be an enjoyable activity for hobbyist and professional photographers alike. It gets us outside so that we can practice our craft in the peace and quiet of the late hours of the evening, and allows us to see things in the sky that are not visible to the naked eye. If you are considering taking your kit out for night sky photos, watching this video is a great way to start.