Spin Cycle

With much of the planet in lock-down due to covid-19, it really does offer an opportunity to stand back and evaluate what we have and what really matters. As we head into late Autumn here in the Southern Hemisphere, the break from the daily grind resulting from this virus has given pause to really appreciate some of the natural beauty in my local surrounds. As a landscape astrophotographer I am often roaming the country in all directions scouting locations and returning at unsociable hours to capture the stars. The somewhat ironic situation of having a sky void of aeroplanes without being able to get out into the countryside away from light pollution to photography the clear night sky isn’t lost on me. Still, the constraints of the current situation do force the creative side to find a way. For me, this has been revisiting star trail photography where the facing the celestial pole gives an appearance of being caught up in the ultimate cosmic spin cycle.

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Starlink Photobomb

After what seemed like an eternity, I was lucky enough to have two full clear nights over the weekend for the new moon. An opportunity I was looking to fully make use of. I had two great nights under the stars in a total of three different locations to watch the Milky Way rise in the East in the wee hours of the morning. Upon a quick scan of the photos I saw the regular plane trails which I generally like to leave in as it gives a sense of scale against our galaxy, besides they are usually out of frame quickly enough. It wasn’t until a few days later when looking at the longer exposure shots of my Panasonic GX85 (a camera not renowned for it’s low light capability) that I noticed something significantly more. I wasn’t too worried about the images from my GX85 as that was only for something to do, so I quickly checked the images from my Sony A7R which I had setup on a slider. Sure enough, of the 325 images I shot on my main camera that night, 65 of them had been photobombed by Starlink.

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