Spectacular Wedding Photo Showing the Milky Way Floating Overhead

Melbourne, Australia-based wedding photographer Lakshal Perera shot this stunning wedding photograph a few days ago showing the newlywed couple in the foreground and the Milky Way floating in the night sky. The scene was extremely dim, allowing for a clear view of the sky. Perera captured it in a single exposure using a Canon 5D Mark III and 16-35 f/2.8L lens at 17mm, 71 seconds of exposure, f/5.6, and ISO boosted up to 4000 (wow). The couple is relatively sharp given that they had to stand still for 71 seconds!

If you want to shoot something similar, here’s a tip: this is the perfect situation to have a graduated neutral density filter handy. Use the filter to properly expose both the dimmer stars above and the brighter lights below.

If you don’t want to drop money on a filter, try looking into the black card technique:

Basically, black card photography uses a black card (could be anything that is dark with a characteristic of not refecting lights) to shelter the brighter area of an image allowing the darker area a longer exposure and the result is a balanced exposure. Compare to gradient graduated ND filter application and HDRI, black card photography can handle a greater dynamic range of luminance and it can be done without computer software post-editing which usually disqualifies a great photo from a photo contest.

Take your black card, and cover up the bottom portion of this shot for a short period of time so that it doesn’t get blown out while you’re trying to properly expose the stars.

(via Lakshal Perera via My Modern Met)

P.S. In case you missed it: yesterday we shared a similar photo of a family posing with the Milky Way.

Image credit: Photograph by Lakshal Perera