Creative Field Techniques - the Milky Way Revisited

When I first started photographing, night sky photography was not on my radar screen. I thought it intimidating and reserved for professionals. I did not believe I had adequate camera equipment or skills to pull of a Milky Way shot. Besides, I had never seen the Milky Way, at least not as it appeared in many photographs. I had no idea how a person with a camera could capture such an amazing scene.

You may be feeling the same. Perhaps you recently purchased your first DSLR or you've never attempted night photography. Maybe your camera is not considered professional-level with its crop sensor and maybe you purchased a kit lens to go with it. Believe me, I know better now and I know that you can get out and shoot your first Milky Way with your current equipment and skills. All you need beyond the camera and wide angle lens is a tripod & ballhead, and a head lamp. 

And you need a dark sky on a clear night and you need to have knowledge of when the Milky Way is visible.

If shooting the Milky Way is not yet on your radar screen, let me just say that while I do not pursue Milky Way shots that often, the experience of shooting the Milky Way is exciting and unique. Simply being under a dark sky in a wilderness area surrounded by complete blackness at 2 am and seeing the Milky Way appear for the first time on the back screen of your camera is priceless.

I highly recommend you give it a try. Your first Milky Way shot may not be worthy of posting, but it won't be your last shot. And if you get hooked, you will eventually master the art of shooting the Milky Way. At the very least, have a blast doing it.

You can check out my Part 1 and Part 2 videos and read my previous blog about shooting the Milky Way.