In Pursuit of the Aurora : A Steep Learning Curve

Hello Readers!

We were fortunate enough to have clear skies here a couple of nights ago coupled with a good Aurora forecast. So I took my gear over to Murphy Dome just outside of Fairbanks and set up for some shooting. It was my goal to create a time lapse and honestly thought I had it nailed until I got back to the house and imported my pictures. There were definitely some issues with this shoot, so lots of learning to be done! Here’s what I found out:

  1. It was -10 degrees that night. I tried to help my camera out by wrapping it in tinfoil and adding some hand warmers. It was not enough and the images showed the sensor in my camera struggling in the cold. The predominant issue was the loss of one of the colors that left a purple tint on the foreground. I had to correct for that. I am going to be creating a wrap and heating system for my camera for future shots.
  2. The sensor issue (cold) led to underexposed shots at settings that should have been well exposed
  3. I shot at 3200 ISO so that I could shoot shorter exposure (6 seconds), but the result of that was very noisy shots that made it hard to correct for the issues listed above
  4. In a non-camera related a close, low spruce tree in the shot for the ‘art’ of it, I wish I hadn’t done that! :p

However, with all that being said I have a product that might give you the desire to see the Lights up here! :). It’s not just a picture, make sure watch the video! There will be more northern lights timelapse photography as I implement new strategies.

4 thoughts on “In Pursuit of the Aurora : A Steep Learning Curve”

  1. Oh my!!!!! I cannot even imagine what this was like to see it “for real” Of course, the -10 degrees puts a perspective on how long I would be out there observing!!!

  2. Ian,
    As always this is great. We expect to see your pictures in NG any month now. Just one question, How did you the orchestra to play out there in the clod weather?

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