startrails

How to Avoid Star Trails by Following the ‘500 Rule’

Due to the rotation of the Earth, it appears as though the stars are moving through the sky in long exposures. Star trails can be a desired effect when done for much longer exposures, but in other cases we want points of light to represent how we see the stars with our eyes. To achieve points of light you can use a simple rule that's often called the "500 Rule".

Star Trails, Fog, Volcanoes and a Meteor: A Spectacular 270-Image Composite

270 photographs and a total exposure time of two hours and fifteen minutes went into creating this stunning composite photograph of an Indonesian landscape complete with an erupting volcano, a steaming caldera, a meteor, copious amounts of fog and beautiful light trails created by cars traveling below the fog.

How to Create ‘Vortex Star Trails’ in Nightsky Astrophotography Time-Lapses

A common technique used in still astrophotography is the creation of startrails, a method by which a photographer overlays multiple long-exposure shots of the stars to create a weaving of constellations. But, as time-lapse photograph and astrophotography have merged in a fairly recent trend, a number of artists have been bringing the idea of startrails to motion-picture, creating what many refer to as ‘vortex startrails.’

If you’ve ever wondered how these motion startrails are created, Matthew Vandeputte has shared the above video – his first ever tutorial – to explain how this look can be achieved in post through the use of Lightroom, After Effects and a common astrophotography program, Startax.

Vincent Brady Pulled Out All the Stops to Create This Magical Firefly Time-Lapse

Firefly photography isn't a novel concept. In fact, long-exposure images of these glowing creatures lighting up beautiful forest scenes have appeared on PetaPixel a couple of times before... we've even featured a tutorial on the subject. But photographer Vincent Brady's firefly time-lapse above IS novel.

It's novel, not because it's a time-lapse of fireflies (we're sure that's been done a time or two) but because he combined many different photographic techniques to create something truly breathtaking.

How-To: Picking a Great Lens for Milky Way Photography

The lens is the most important factor in the image quality of a landscape astrophoto.

There are a number of lens traits that will determine the quality and usability of a camera lens for astrophotography. Let me explain what sort of thinking should go into choosing and using a lens for making astrophotography and Milky Way nightscapes.

Trippy Time-Lapse Complete With Giant Dinosaur and Mammoth Sculptures

We've seen some pretty cool and trippy time-lapses before (the few "lyric lapse" videos we've shared immediately come to mind) but the Borrego Stardance above takes the cake. Mixing massive metal sculptures of dinosaurs, insects, mammoths and more with beautiful star trails and the milky way, the folks at Sunchaser Pictures have created a time-lapse truly worthy of the designation "trippy."

A Complete Guide to Star Trailing

Ever see those pictures where the stars streak across the sky in a big arc? Or maybe the whole sky looked like it was spinning? What you saw was star trails. The streaks were light left behind on the sensor or film from the star as it traveled across the sky in front of an open camera shutter. In fact, what are being recorded are stationary stars and the rotation of the earth as it spins past them. For me, the images seem to have a certain magic or mystery about them.

You must have heard a photographer talking about capturing that perfect moment in time. Well for capturing star trails you will need to capture the perfect hour or two in time. For such amazing looking images, the technique used to capture them is really quite simple. Keep reading for a complete set of instructions from start to finish.

Beautiful Time-Lapse of Long Exposure Star Trails Traversing the Night Sky

North Carolina-based photographer Daniel Lowe sent us the gorgeous video above, which shows star trails forming and floating across the sky. Most time-lapse videos of the night sky show stars as points of light, rotating around Earth's pole. Lowe's video shows the long streaks of star trails doing the rotating, making the video even more surreal and magical.

Incredible Long Exposure Photographs Shot from Orbit

Last month we shared a long exposure photograph by NASA astronaut Don Pettit that showed star trails and city trails in the same frame. Turns out the photo was just one of many long exposure images shot by Pettit so far during Expedition 31. The photograph above shows star trails, an aurora, and flashes of lightning splattered all across the surface of the Earth.

Stunning Star Trails Photographed from the Australian Outback

Photographer Lincoln Harrison captures jaw-dropping photographs of star trails. Shooting from the Australian outback, he spends up to 15 hours creating each image of the night sky. Shooting with a Nikon D7000, Nikon D3100, and a wide assortment of lenses, Harrison captures a large number of exposures of the foreground and stars separately. He then combines the images (sometimes hundreds of them) into amazing photographs showing the sky dominated by colorful star trails.