Sunday, July 12, 2015

From the Sea to the Sky - Malibu Milky Way

Malibu Milky Way

Here is another MW image from Malibu overlooking the Santa Monica Mountains. The low fog was quite thick so I wanted to capture some foreground detail to show how it was creeping through the mountains. This view looks out South towards the ocean and the line of light running through the image is PCH covered in the fog. My 20mm wasn't wide enough to capture this, so this is a 3 shot vertical pano which was stitched and scaled back to a landscape orientation version. I often get questions of how best to focus for astro shots. For a shot like this with nothing in the foreground, you can try a few things. You can auto focus on one of the houses out in the distance. Sometimes your auto focus may be off tho, so always take a test shot and check it. Another method you can use, and will be able to use if your surrounds are pitch black is live view manual focusing. To do this switch to live view, use your + button to zoom in as much as it will go and locate a star on your screen. Slowly turn your focus ring until that star becomes a sharp point. Flip your AF off if you haven't already to make sure you don't accidentally re-focus and take the shot. I constantly use both techniques depending on the results so couldn't say which is better it's just a good idea to have multiple methods that work.
3 shots stitched from the Nikon D750, Nikkor 20mm, f/2.8, 15 sec, ISO-1600

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Brandon Yoshizawa
B.A.Y | photography
Landscape and Wildlife photography