Perseid Constellations

You might remember Backyard Perseid from the other day.

That was a one-off shot, one 20-second exposure out of four hours worth of continuous shooting.  That came out to 552 images.  All taken while we slept.

I started working on the star trails, but it just wasn’t working out the way I wanted it.  Mainly, the trails were coming out way too bright and any attempt to minimize them just looked wrong.  Plus, the seven or so meteorites that tracked across this view were lost in the trails.  Granted, most were so faint that I’d be surprised if we had noticed them if we were viewing directly. but even the bright one in Backyard Perseid was almost lost in the trails.

No good.

So here’s my happy medium.  I’m not entirely pleased with it, but that’s just motivation to keep trying.

Perseid Constellations
Perseid Constellations

The trails comprise the time frame from 10:35:18pm on Monday, August 12th to 2:33:22am on Tuesday, August 13th.  That’s when the camera batteries were completely drained.

The final image, which is where you see all of the focused stars, is from that last image at 2:33:22am.

The bright meteorite in the bottom half is from 10:44:50pm.  It won’t show here, but there’s another meteorite, very faint, just above and to the left in that same frame.

And after the recent spate of star images I’ve posted, I received this comic frame, which I think is very appropriate.


So which is your preference?  The solo frame of the meteorite with the Milky Way?  Or the composite with the star trails and meteorite?


Goddess and I had been discussing a specific photo shoot for a few weeks.  Specifically, a full moon setting over Crater Lake.

Basic in concept, a bit more technical in execution.

Especially since I’m technically-minded.

Meaning that I confirmed my shooting location down to 1/1000th of a degree, thanks to GPS.

That’s just what I do to make sure that I capture what I want.

In this case, I wanted to capture the moon setting over Wizard Island.

Thanks to The Photogrpaher’s Ephemeris, it was fairly easy to determine the spot that I needed to stand to capture the image that I wanted.

So it was planned, planned and planned.

But switching from a standard diurnal sleep schedule to one that allowed us to catch a moonset at 05:54am local time, some two hours away, took a bit of planning.

Luckily, our preparation sleep didn’t work out as planned.

So that meant that we started the drive to Crater Lake a few hours earlier than we had planned.  Which gave us the time to play a bit.

20 seconds at a time.


For those that keep track, that’s a 20-second exposure, two hundred times, at ISO800, with a 28/1.8 lens set at f4.0.  Stacked and processed.

So approximately 90 minutes of images to track the stars.

But what does “Charioteer” have to do with it?  It’s the Anglicized nickname of the constellation Auriga, of which its brightest star, just left of center, is rising from and to the right of the Llao Rock.  The star is known as Capella, third brightest in the northern celestial hemisphere.

Thankfully, we were helped by an almost full moon directly behind us, front lighting the all of the terrestrial features.  At the median time that the image was taken, the full moon wouldn’t be for another 10 hours, in the middle of the day.

That wouldn’t do.

But this will.

Oh, and for those of you that are curious about that bright streak in the lake, just lower right of Wizard Island, that is a pollen raft.  The pollen from the trees surrounding the lake will settle on the surface and the wind will push the particles together.  So you’ll often see expansive pollen rafts scattered about Crater Lake.  But the season has passed, leaving this one behind.


For those of you who have enjoyed the images, you may not realize that I do offer my prints for sale.

Each image is a click-through, meaning if you click on it, it will take you to another site.  For those I think enough of to offer as a print, which are not all of them, it will take you to my web site where you can purchase them and have them delivered directly to you.  Without watermarks.

Since I have not done a very good job of making this known, I’m offering two coupons valid for the rest of July, 2013.  You just have to browse over to my online gallery.

For purchases up to $300 (before shipping), the discount is 15%.  Just use the code 13Summer when checking out.

For purchases above $300 (before shipping), the discount is 20%.  Just use the code 13Summer20 when checking out.

Unfortunately, only one coupon is valid per order.

If you are considering prints (e.g., not canvas or framed images) I cannot recommend the metallic finish enough.  Seriously.  It adds a dimension to the images that cannot be matched in any other finish.  Almost three-dimensional, especially when it comes to portraits and landscape.  It is my go-to finish for any prints I order, especially for my family portraits.

While I mainly post landscape images here, I do have several other genres that I enjoy capturing:  Travel, Architecture, Nature, Street and Autos.  Each genre is available directly from my main page.

Thank you for your consideration.  And for stopping by to read my rambles.