Thursday, August 25, 2011

A Celestial Array


The contemplation of celestial things will make a man both speak and think more sublimely and magnificently when he descends to human affairs.

One of the many things I look forward to when I visit Sun Valley is the chance to see a night sky full of stars. I was especially excited to try some astrophotography with our new camera. The first night revealed that there was no easy way to focus on infinity. (Canon, can we please get an infinity lock setting?) Many of my shots were out of focus because the auto-focus was utterly useless at night and it was impossible to manually focus since the focus ring didn't stop at infinity, but some point beyond, in order to compensate for variations due to temperature fluctuations.


So the next day, I focused the camera on a distant mountain, and applied a few pieces of scotch tape to the lens and focus ring to mark an infinity focus point. Later that night, here's what developed...




These were shot at 3200 ASA for about 8 seconds at F 1.8. If only Los Angeles were as dark as Ketchum, Idaho, I could enjoy this celestial array 365 days a year.