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Weekend Wanderings – Photographing the Milky Way

milky-way-coast-stars-night-7

For today’s post I thought I would show you some of the milky way photos that I have been taking recently.  I have some from Woomelang, Sealake and down here along the coast between Cape Schanck and Flinders. They seem the same, in some ways, but I have tried to do different things in each them.  I am finding that just photographing the milky way isn’t enough now and I want to start trying some new things as well, like looking for interesting foregrounds.lake-tyrell-sealake-stars-milkyway   This one was taken on the way back from the Pink Lakes.  We stopped near Lake Tyrell to take some photos of the milky way.  Unfortunately the clouds came over quickly.  I don’t mind the clouds in this one. milky-way-stars-shearingshed-woomelang This one and some others were taken around the old shearing shed in Woomelang.  I wasn’t sure I would be able to get the shearing shed, but I am glad I got this.  There is a bush in front of the shearing shed and it casts a big shadow on it, I wonder if I could get the council there to cut it down. milky-way-coast-stars-night-5 The other night I went out with a friend and we went down to the Sorrento back beach to take some sunset shots.  It was a great spot.  I do love photographing the ocean. milky-way-coast-stars-night-9 After we had dinner we went out past Cape Schanck to see what photos of the milky way we could get.  There was enough of a moon shining on the coast and you could get some wonderful night shots of the coast.  I would really love to go back and do some shots with the full moon sometime. I have a long day ahead today.  I have a One on One in the city and it will be all day.  I am looking forward to it, but it will be a long day.  So I am going to leave it here and put the photos in a gallery for you.

 

188 Comments
  1. Wonderful!

    July 6, 2014
  2. Beautiful star photos!

    July 6, 2014
  3. Fantastic Leanne!

    July 6, 2014
  4. Jackie Saulmon Ramirez #

    I never knew the Milky Way could be so beautiful. The one along the shore is spectacular; the shooting star (if that’s what it is) adds a nice touch. I wonder at the world and am glad people work to get just the right images to share with others. 🙂

    July 6, 2014
    • It is amazing when you photograph it because your camera sees things that you can’t see. I love the ones along the shore, I’m not sure what that is, but it could be a shooting star. Thank you Jackie, it is nice to try and get wonderful images of the world around us. 🙂

      July 6, 2014
  5. Wow! Amazing!

    July 6, 2014
  6. Gorgeous star photos, the hints of moonlight make the photos amazing.

    July 6, 2014
    • Thank you Katie, I love the moonlight too.

      July 6, 2014
  7. Those are some awesome shots Leanne. I went to Mt. Rainier last year and it rained the entire night. Never did get a good shot. Maybe next time.

    July 6, 2014
    • Thank you Spencer, I hate it when that happens, though all you need is a lot of cloud cover and the night is ruined. Yes hopefully next time.

      July 6, 2014
  8. Faqeeha Aleem #

    Beautiful captures! Sky sighting is so close to my heart! I adore these images 🙂

    July 6, 2014
    • Thank you, I have to admit I am fast becoming addicted and can’t wait to go out again. 🙂

      July 6, 2014
  9. These are amazing!

    July 6, 2014
  10. Your catch was gorgeous!!

    July 6, 2014
  11. Fantastic post, Leanne. Thank you!

    July 6, 2014
    • You’re very welcome Amy, and thank you too.

      July 6, 2014
  12. Stunning, Leanne! They’re all lovely. I am SO inspired to get out there and play with night sky images! Ah, so many projects, so little time…

    July 6, 2014
    • Thank you Katrina, I know what you mean, there are so many things I want to do as well. Arrhhh for more time.

      July 6, 2014
  13. Stunning, thank you for sharing. Shane

    July 6, 2014
  14. Our skies are have so much light pollution we have little chance of seeing such sights, but I’ve written it on my list of things. Thanks.

    July 6, 2014
    • You will have to come here Stephen, once you get out of the city it isn’t really a problem. I have heard that about the UK though, which is sad. Do you ever have those nights where they tell everyone to turn off their lights for an hour, maybe plan for then. Thank you.

      July 6, 2014
      • In some areas they do.
        Beside the light pollution problem, this time of year the sky doesn’t get particularly dark because the sun isn’t very far below the horizon.

        July 6, 2014
      • I hadn’t realised that about the sun, it never happens here, in summer the sun stays up longer, but we still get about 8 hours of dark skies. That would be a bummer.

        July 6, 2014
      • There are positives on the other side of the coin, of course.

        July 6, 2014
      • I am sure there is Stephen, usually is. I love your countryside.

        July 6, 2014
      • 🙂
        The people of Yorkshire, the area in which I live to Yorkshire as ‘God’s own country’!

        July 7, 2014
      • I can believe that, what I have seen in shows and the internet, really makes me want to go there. 🙂

        July 7, 2014
      • Not sure if you will have got much in the way of coverage of the Tour de France, but the first two stages have been in Yorkshire – the helicopter shots have been quite delightful.

        July 7, 2014
      • They show it here, be you have to stay up all night to see it, so we just watch the highlights

        July 7, 2014
      • Highlights it is then. We have the same problem with the cricket – the late evening (your time) stuff is not so bad, providing we get up early enough.

        July 7, 2014
      • Oh yes, the cricket, the night matches are great.

        July 7, 2014
      • 🙂

        July 8, 2014
  15. Fantastic shots, Leanne.

    July 6, 2014
  16. Nice work, Leanne, I especially like the “milky way coast-7” image. Nice, even light on the terrain and water, no overly bright street lights, and nice sharp stars. Hope to have some of these myself soon; heading out west in late August for a place that has dark skies. Keep up the good work.

    July 6, 2014
    • I like that too Robin, the coast was amazing to photograph with the moonlight. They are so much fun to get Robin, I hope you get lots. I love doing them. Thanks

      July 6, 2014
  17. Beautiful work, Leanne.

    July 6, 2014
  18. These are fantastic. What camera do you use?

    July 6, 2014
    • Thank you, I used a Nikon D800.

      July 6, 2014
  19. What wonderful shots…..have you written somewhere about the settings you use to catch these beautiful images?

    July 6, 2014
    • Thank you Seonaid, yes I did write something on the blog on my website. Though I have someone doing a guestpost on this on Tuesday.

      July 6, 2014
      • Great I’ll look forward to reading it on Tuesday 🙂

        July 6, 2014
      • That’s great Seonaid. 🙂

        July 6, 2014
  20. Your photos are really amazing great Leanne 😀

    July 6, 2014
  21. That one with the shed is incredible! Well done 😉

    July 6, 2014
    • Thanks Linda, I think I like doing that sort of thing, would love to find more to do. 🙂

      July 6, 2014
  22. I like the Astro shots with some of the earth bound elements still in the picture.

    July 6, 2014
    • I think they work well too Robert. Thanks.

      July 6, 2014
  23. Marvelous, Leanne! I have been an avid reader of Sky & Telescope magazine for many decades and admired a lot of sky photos. Yours are right up there with the best.

    July 6, 2014
    • What a lovely thing to say Ludwig, I think I still have a lot to learn, but I do love doing them. Thank you.

      July 6, 2014
  24. Heavenly shots.

    July 6, 2014
  25. WOW! These are absolutly stunning! Love all of them. I really have to try something like it around here as well… But I first need a cloudless sky and a car to go to the remote spots of the island.

    July 6, 2014
    • There are so many things to do, there are always factors, the cloudless sky is a big one. I hope you get an opportunity to, it is a lot of fun. Thanks you Sari.

      July 6, 2014
  26. Breath-taking shots! I always wanted to do photos like those but I do not possess a camera capable of making them. Great post!!

    July 6, 2014
    • Maybe one day you will, it is fun to try. Thank you Luka.

      July 6, 2014
  27. Beautiful….they are all awesome!!!

    July 6, 2014
  28. The Flinders shot is my favourite, all of them are beautiful for what you were working to create, but that’s the stand out for me. Like Stephen G. Hipperson, light pollution puts pay to attempts to view or photograph such things where I am, but as the Southern Sky has its seasonal variation it is even more wonderful to see the different view.

    July 6, 2014
    • The Flinders shots were amazing. It is a shame that light pollution is so bad where you are, I hope you get to have a chance to get some, maybe in your winter.
      Thank you.

      July 6, 2014
  29. Awesome pics of the Milky Way! I never in a million thought of trying that! Awesomeness! Hugz Lisa and Bear

    July 6, 2014
    • Thank you Lisa. It has been great trying it out, and I think because you can only do it at certain times makes it more special.

      July 6, 2014
  30. Son of Sharecroppers #

    Gorgeous. I envy you your absence of light pollution.

    July 6, 2014
    • Thank you, we are lucky that we don’t have to travel too far to get out of it.

      July 6, 2014
  31. I agree with you that the addition of foreground detail makes the scenes more interesting. Terrific gallery Leanne. 🙂

    July 6, 2014
    • I think so, I like the ones with something in the foreground. Thank you.

      July 6, 2014
  32. Leanne, this reminds me that when I was a kid here in Texas, I could see views like this of the Milky Way from my back yard. Sadly, those nights have given way to a smattering of stars against a greyish sky. I had memories of those nights in mind when I wrote my last night. Thank you for giving me a tangible visual reminder of the wonder I feel when I see the night sky.

    July 6, 2014
    • That is wonderful, I remember that sky too, I can remember lying down on the ground and looking up at the stars, haven’t done that for years. Nice memories, thank you.

      July 6, 2014
  33. Leanne, does it take long to get each photo? I haven’t experimented with exposure on my camera and these stunning photos are making me think. 😀

    July 6, 2014
    • No, not really, each one is exposed for about 30 seconds. Yes, you should try and see how you go, the photos are so amazing. Thank you. 😀

      July 6, 2014
  34. I’m sort of speechless if you can believe that! They are amazing!!!!! I love the composition creativity too with the railroad tracks signal and over the shoreline. They take my breath away.

    July 6, 2014
    • Is this where I say, you speechless, never. Thank you, I’m quite proud of them. It is fun to play with what is around you, I did enjoy doing that.

      July 6, 2014
      • LOL! Yeah, shocking I know. 😉 I can tell you love what you do. And when you love a particular photo, I think it really stands out. You are SO TALENTED!

        July 6, 2014
      • Oh stop it, really, you are embarrassing me, 🙂

        July 7, 2014
      • 😛

        July 7, 2014
  35. BEAUTIFUL BEAUTIFUL BEAUTIFUL

    July 6, 2014
    • Thank you, thank you, thank you.

      July 6, 2014
  36. mikew66 #

    Just stunning the colours are amazing

    July 6, 2014
    • Thank you Mike, it is amazing how different the colour of the sky can be depending on where you are.

      July 6, 2014
  37. Do you have any tips for photographing the stars? These are fantastic shots!

    July 6, 2014
    • If you go to my website, and look at the news blog there are a couple of posts there, but this Tuesday’s Up for Discussion is also about it. Thank you.

      July 6, 2014
      • Thank you! I really love your photographs and these are fantastic. I especially love the shots where you’ve used the artifical lights of the streets, etc. as part of the composition.

        July 6, 2014
      • You’re welcome, and thank you too, I liked doing that with what was in the street, would like to more of that.

        July 6, 2014
  38. Great shots as always, Sorrento is on my list. Also just to let you know I haven’t had any of your posts in my reader since last Wednesday – it seems to be happening to a few blogs lately.

    July 6, 2014
    • Sorrento is wonderful Lisa, the back beach is amazing. I don’t know what is happening, did you download anything that might have caused it, that seems to be a common problem.
      Thanks Lisa.

      July 6, 2014
  39. These shots are beautiful! Would you mind sharing what settings you used on your camera to get these shots? When I try, they always turn out too blurry because I need a long exposure to capture the stars. Thanks!

    July 6, 2014
    • Not at all, f/2.8, 30 seconds, ISO 6400. You need to set your lens on infinity, if you can’t you should set it during the day and then put some tape on it so it doesn’t move. Thank you Lutz.

      July 6, 2014
      • Thank you! Will try that as soon as we have a dark clear night (doesn’t happen very often around here due to light pollution).

        July 6, 2014
      • No problem at all, good luck.

        July 7, 2014
  40. Suzanne #

    Wow – these are superb. I love the way you are photographing the stars above the landscape. It really creates a sense that life is just so much bigger and far more wonderful than we tend to think. It would be wonderful if you make these images into a calender or something. Getting them out into the world seems like a must to me. More people need to see them. 🙂

    July 6, 2014
    • Thank you Suzanne, I agree, the foreground does that, it is something I want to work on more. I don’t know about that, I do like taking them, but not sure what people would use them for, haven’t really thought it.

      July 6, 2014
      • Suzanne #

        I still think they’d make brilliant photos for a calendar – they are really thought provoking. 🙂

        July 6, 2014
      • I will have to keep it in mind Suzanne, could be something to work on for next year. 🙂

        July 7, 2014
  41. These are so impressive Leanne! Beautiful!

    July 6, 2014
  42. Absolutely beautiful. I hope I csn learn to do sky photos like that one dsy

    July 6, 2014
    • It is surprisingly easy, so I hope you do try one day. Thank you.

      July 6, 2014
  43. I am always filled with awe when I look at the night skies and your photos are awe inspiring. To think we are on Orion’s arm of that beautiful galaxy. You really capture the mystery here and a shooting star too!!!

    July 6, 2014
    • Thank you Cybele, I don’t know much about the constellations, I want to learn more, but I have just started.

      July 6, 2014
  44. Wow, Leanne! They are all so gorgeous. I kept pushing the arrow until I went around at least three times. Wonderful post :-).

    July 6, 2014
    • Thank you Pam, that is great to hear, I love doing these, so I am sure you will see more. 🙂

      July 6, 2014
  45. “…just photographing the milky way isn’t enough now…” I’m absolutely fascinated with your photos of the sky, and while I can empathize with your sentiment on having seen it and moved on, I’m still delighted and amazed, and I think had I been the one to photograph these, that I might just stop there altogether. I’ve never seen such sights myself. I should get out of cities more. Delightful! Thank you.

    July 6, 2014
    • I like the idea of trying to capture the milky way in different settings. I think just the milky way on its own is good, but it is so nice to include more with the image. Yes, it is always good to get out of the city, glad you enjoyed them, thank you William.

      July 6, 2014
  46. These are wonderful. I just visited my friend out in the country and mentioned I wanted to do some star trail photography. He was skeptical I could do it. I sent him my fireworks images so maybe he’ll “see the light”. if I can approach what you’ve done here I’ll be very happy. Thank you for the inspiration and we always are cheered up when we earn one of your likes.

    July 6, 2014
    • It is so much easier than you think, so don’t let your friend put you off. I am sure you can do as well as me maybe even better, good luck and thank you.

      July 6, 2014
  47. makdicowz #

    awesome.

    July 6, 2014
  48. Wow! Just WOW! Spectacular images, Leanne 🙂

    July 6, 2014
  49. Oh I Iove these Leanne and also love the foregrounds.
    Wonderful… All of them 🙂
    I particularly like the one of Flinders with beach and is that a shooting star? Fantastic!
    Have the best day today 🙂

    July 6, 2014
    • Thank you Robyn, if I can get up there some time, we will have to try doing some of this.
      I don’t know if it was a shooting star, I wasn’t really paying attention, haha. I like the light on the beaches at Flinders, it was so nice, I want to do more.
      I did have a good day, hope you did too. 😀

      July 6, 2014
      • That would be great fun. Will look forward to it when we are able 🙂
        The beach was lovely..the light fantastic.
        We could call it a shooting star? Ha ha…
        I did have a good day thanks. Glad you did 🙂

        July 6, 2014
      • We just have to remember not to drink too much red before we start, we don’t want star crossed stars 😉
        I loved how the beach turned out, I love the idea of doing photos with moonlight and really want to do more.
        Yes, we can call it a shooting star, it wasn’t a plane, so it probably was one.
        Are you home yet? When do you want to chat?

        July 7, 2014
      • You up for a chat today? I can be.
        Lol…gotta have a little red, but yes, not too much!
        The moonlight works beautifully. I didn’t know what your light source was and I did wonder. Its wonderful 🙂

        July 7, 2014
      • Sounds good, what time do you think?

        July 7, 2014
  50. Stunning shots. The clouds add something for me, not detract. Familiarity, I think. Anyway, I love your night sky photography – would love to see more. x

    July 6, 2014
    • I quite like them too Kerry, they are quite weird, like dirty clouds. Thank you so much Kerry.

      July 6, 2014
  51. Stunning series of photos Leanne.

    July 6, 2014
  52. I love all of these, both the Milky Way and the ocean shots. But, really, the photos that include BOTH are my favorites! That one with the waves crashing against the night sky, and the shooting star on the middle–fabulous!

    July 6, 2014
    • I think they are my favourites too. I was there at that spot for a while trying to get those shots, so glad you like them. thank you Kerry.

      July 6, 2014
  53. Wow!

    July 6, 2014
  54. Wow! Spectacular photos of the night sky.

    July 6, 2014
  55. really wonderful images, Leanne!!

    July 6, 2014
  56. All your night landscape images are really inspiring me for when I go to the mountains in a few weeks time and escape the city. Keep sharing them.

    July 6, 2014
    • Thank you Ben, that is fantastic, I hope you get a lot of great shots. I will share them as I do them, such a shame that you have to wait so long in between new moons.

      July 7, 2014
  57. Pat #

    Gorgeous!

    July 6, 2014
  58. settleandchase #

    These are fantastic!

    July 7, 2014
  59. Beautiful shots Leanne!!

    You made me miss Australia ever so much more today. I lived in Woomera back in the late 70s.

    Thank you for sharing these.

    July 7, 2014
    • Thank you, but not good that I made you miss it,I bet it has changed a lot since you were there, would be great if you could see it now and compare.

      July 7, 2014
  60. Superb shots, Leanne! I especially like the one with the shearing shed. That limited building is an excellent contrast to the vastness above it! Very nice indeed! 🙂

    July 7, 2014
    • Thank you Thomas, that is a great comment, I really like the way you have said that. 🙂

      July 7, 2014
  61. Wonderful work!!

    July 7, 2014
  62. These are just stunning. I love looking up into the infinity of the night sky (who doesnt?) but even from a small city like mine we only see a few dozen of the brighest and most well-known stars dotted around the blanket of black. The amount of stars on your skyscapes is beautiful, and to capture them in photos is very impressive.
    Thank you so much for sharing them!

    July 7, 2014
    • Thank you. I was lucky to get away from the bright lights and you can see so much more when you do. Some were taken about 400 km from the city, so no chance of it messing up my photos.

      July 7, 2014
  63. wonderful work

    July 7, 2014
  64. sooo beautiful! 🙂

    July 7, 2014
  65. These are amazing! I need to learn how to do this 😀

    July 7, 2014
    • Thank you, and yes, do try it, it really isn’t that hard.

      July 7, 2014
  66. Out of this world!!! 🙂

    July 7, 2014
  67. very beautiful set of astrophotography, leanne.
    I especially like how you have composed them with some earthly elements to give it that ‘its a big universe out there’ feeling.
    what is the typical set-up for these photos to get the nice colours? i tried my hand at it recently but the universe background appeared ‘black’ rather than colourful :(.

    July 8, 2014
    • I like doing that, I think it gives it some context and must admit it is what I really like doing with these as well. I just posted a discussion on this here written by my friend John Holding, hopefully it will give you all the information you need. Thank you.

      July 8, 2014
  68. Great photos Leanne! When I look at the photos of the water I can’t help but think “long exposure”. lol. I am drawn to the water and always want to do long exposures.

    I was going to get out and get some photos of the Milky Way the other night but the misquotes were just too bad. Keep up the good work and can’t wait to see more. 🙂

    July 8, 2014
    • I love doing long exposures of water, they are amazing.
      Thanks Justin, it is nice being able to do them without pests around, I think summer will be bad for doing them here for the same reasons.

      July 8, 2014
  69. Those are some fantastic night sky shots. Getting into the countryside is the ideal way of avoiding the city lights. Another way is getting above the lights. When my niece was taking an astronomy class in university, they had to do a night-time laboratory session which was going to the campus’ observatory above the campus. The road, naturally, had no lights or reflectors to mark whether you know where you were – going up not really a problem but coming down was. But, I must say the night sky at the observatory site was splendid. You were able to see a lot more stars and plenty of shooting stars. Too bad digital cameras in 1998 were quite rudimentary and my 35mm SLR was loaded with wrong film speed.

    July 8, 2014
    • That could be fun to try David, getting above the lights. I would love to do the night sky from an observatory, even just to look through a telescope would be so amazing. That is a shame, you might have to try it again David, plan a holiday somewhere where you can get some shots of the milky way, I know come to Melbourne and then out to the Mallee.
      Thank you

      July 8, 2014
  70. Jen #

    Leanne, I am so behind and so busy i didn’t think I’d have time to comment, but that first photo is absolutely glorious! It’s beautifully framed, just perfect. I love the light playing in it.

    Also, I stumbled across this today: http://digital.photorecommendations.com/recs/2014/07/6-reasons-you-should-own-a-prime-lens/ I’ll make you fall for a nifty fifty one of these days. 😉

    July 8, 2014
    • I know that feeling Jen, I feel like sometimes my whole life is behind. Thank you so much.
      Interesting, I must admit I am a fan of zoom lenses because I feel like I have more room to move, so to speak, but I also have very good ones. Though I like playing with the 50mm for some things. I think if I was to use a prime for a lot of things, it would be the 35mm, I find the 50mm to frustrating, not wide enough.

      July 8, 2014
  71. LB #

    I want to grow up and be like you someday! 🙂
    These are so beautiful … I can’t even imagine catching something like this someday!

    July 8, 2014
    • Haha, oh thank you LB, what a lovely thing to say.
      They really aren’t that hard to get, I was so surprised when I first did it. Read the up for discussion post today and you will get some ideas.
      Thank you. 😀

      July 8, 2014
  72. Stunning photography of the Milky Way, Leanne

    July 8, 2014
  73. Another beautiful set….I particularly like the milky way by itself and the ocean colours are sublime : )

    July 8, 2014
    • Thank you Trees, I love how the ocean came out and really want to do some more shots like this.

      July 9, 2014
  74. Wow! Wonderful shots. I never get to see the Milky Way here. It’s one of the things I treasure about our travels in Australia.

    July 9, 2014
    • I couldn’t imagine not being able to see the milky way, though our eyes don’t see it the same way as the camera. I hope you get to take some photos of it Rachael. Thank you.

      July 9, 2014
  75. Fantastic shots. One of the things I love about Australia is how much easier it is to see the stars – much easier to get away from the light pollution.

    July 11, 2014
    • Thank you Stevie, and you are right, you really don’t have to travel that far to get great star shots.

      July 12, 2014
  76. lmarea3070 #

    Great job, Missy! I love the pics!

    October 23, 2014
  77. Leanne, Very Nice! Been shooting star trails, Milky Way, light painting about a year now. Will get stuff on my blog. That Shot with the shearing shed and bush, I DO put my flash in front of bushes, trees, rocks on radio triggers. Does 2 things, hides the LED on the back of the flash, and 2 no shadow. I put a variety of colored gels on flashes. (My photo/camping buddy is from Aus. Kangaroo Valley) Happy Shooting!

    February 1, 2015
    • I don’t quite get what you mean about the flash Peter, where do you put it. I was using a flash for many of my shots too, though sometimes it is nice to just set the camera up and go for it. Thank you.

      February 1, 2015

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