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  1. #1
    Member Canyon Hiker's Avatar
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    What is this in the sky??

    Today I read in the newspaper that tonight was a good time for viewing the "waxing crescent moon and the planet Jupiter". After my failed attempt on the recent meteor shower, I figure I would take a few shots tonight and see if it was even possible to capture anything with my cheap sigma 70-300 (my only zoom lens).
    Well the shot of jupiter didnt go so well. While trying to set my focus on a passing over plane (pic 3) I noticed something different in the picture during post processing. What is this??. I was shooting through my laptop so there is very little image shake, but there is still some.You can see the image shake from the swirly marks on the pic with the plane passing over. I'm sure one of you can fill me in.

    Thanks, the curiosity is driving me crazy.
    original shot
    What is this in the sky??-img_0034weird.jpg
    cropped
    What is this in the sky??-img_0034weirdcloseup.jpg
    original shot
    What is this in the sky??-img_0035.jpg
    Jupiter
    What is this in the sky??-img_0036.jpg
    we know what this one is..
    What is this in the sky??-img_0024.jpg

    Darin
    "There are many paths to the top of the mountain, but only one view"
    "You can't depend on your eyes when your imagination is out of focus".
    "Whenever man comes up with a better mousetrap, nature immediately comes up with a better mouse."

  2. #2
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    Re: What is this in the sky??

    Weird, could it be a light flair or reflection of some type? Ineteresting though. Nice shot of the moon especially for a 300mm zoom.
    Bill,

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  3. #3
    Learning more with every "click" mjs1973's Avatar
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    Re: What is this in the sky??

    Do you have a UV filter on your lens? They can cause issues of ghosting and flair when shooting at night like this.
    Mike

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  4. #4
    Member Canyon Hiker's Avatar
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    Re: What is this in the sky??

    Thanks Slayman. I live far from any city lights and have taken thousands of pictures of the sky and moon with this setup from my house. I set my camera on a tri-pod and use the EOS remote shooting. This makes it easy for night sky shots. In general I will set the timer to fire off 20 shots at 1 minute shutter speeds at F4-5, 1 minute apart. Makes its pretty easy. But never have I captured a picture like the one in queation. No Filters and no editing.

    Darin
    "There are many paths to the top of the mountain, but only one view"
    "You can't depend on your eyes when your imagination is out of focus".
    "Whenever man comes up with a better mousetrap, nature immediately comes up with a better mouse."

  5. #5
    Hardcore...Nikon Speed's Avatar
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    Re: What is this in the sky??

    You have camera shake in the first three images. The red lights in the third image are the wingtip lights, while the intermitent lights in the middle are the strobe lights.

    You fourth shot shows Jupiter and some of it's moons. The moons are those small streaks on either side of it.

    Your moon shot is awesome! Great capture.

    What I do for my astrophotography shots is set my zoom (if I'm using a zoom) on the focal length I'm going to use, then I use a bright star or planet (Jupiter is an excellent target) and focus on it. Then I set my focus to manual so I'm locked in and my camera doesn't hunt for focus. Also, remember that the more focal length you have, the more trailing (streaking) you are going to get. I find that 30 seconds at 50mm is all the trailing I find acceptable. At longer focal lengths I use a shorter exposure.

    You didn't mention your setup. Tripod, head, were you set up on the ground, on a deck? I've taken shots of the ISS flying overhead that were blurred because I took them on my deck and people were walking on it. Make sure you have a solid tripod and head, and make sure you are on something solid - ground, sidewalk, driveway.

    I have a Sigma 70-300, and while it isn't a top of the line Nikon or Canon, it is a respectable lens, especially for the money. Your fourth and fifth shots show that.
    Nikon Samurai # 1


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  6. #6
    Member Canyon Hiker's Avatar
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    Re: What is this in the sky??

    Thanks for the info and reply speed. I know the first three shots have camera shake. My focal point was the plane to start. My camera was on a tri-pod but I was pressing the shutter button manually. After I get the auto focus to find a taret I then switch to manual mode. Then I turn the camera to the object I am trying to capture. I use my laptop (live view remote shooting with EOS software) to manually dial in the focus and control the shutter.
    The object in question in the first three shots I found intriguing. With the image shake, I figure the spiral line was probably fairly straight, and the cylinder was much smaller in compairing it to the image shake from the plane.
    It was very surprising for me to see this object, but I'm sure its nothing out of the norm for astrophotographers, which I am not. The funny thing is that when I shoot from my house I always target either East or West. West is always best for moon shots and East seems to have a high number of shooting stars/meteors. The plane was North. I think I need to spend more time shooting in all directions.
    The tripod I was using is 30 years old. It was my dads before being passed down to me. It is the most solid tri-pod I have ever seen or used, but I don't prefer to carry the beast on long hikes. It was set on pavement.
    The sigma does work as well as a higher quality lens for moon shots. I have used a EF 70-200 f/2.8L IS USM on a few occasions and to my surprise, had the same results as my sigma. But that's about all this lens is good for. Shooting birds, even on a tri-podi with good light, is very poor quality above 200mm and is ok from 70 to 160. But for the price you cant beat it. After using the f/2 with birds there is no comparison between the two. Thanks again for your comments and info, It is much appreciated.

    Darin
    "There are many paths to the top of the mountain, but only one view"
    "You can't depend on your eyes when your imagination is out of focus".
    "Whenever man comes up with a better mousetrap, nature immediately comes up with a better mouse."

  7. #7
    Panarus biarmicus Moderator (Sports) SmartWombat's Avatar
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    Re: What is this in the sky??

    East seems to have a high number of shooting stars/meteors
    I would say they are not shooting stars/meteors at all, but satellites.
    It's very hard to get meteor shots, and if you can see it for more than a second it's almost definitely a satellite.

    Your two "original shot" both look like simple camera shake on a point of light.
    The shot with the airplane, the red and white spots are the strobes on the belly and tail, with the outer trails from the wingtip lights. Strange I can't see the wingtip strobes though.

    I would say the plane was flying away from you, and the shake is more pronounced at the start of the exposure, and dies down toward the end but doesn't completely go away. Just from the strobes I'd say the exposure was around 5 seconds.

    From the shape of the trails on the airplane lights I think your white object is just one stationary object, not two. You have two movements superimposed. A left-right drift, and vertical and horizontal vibrations that damp down at different rates.


    Looks like you have serious problems with camera shake throughout both images.
    Was it windy that night?
    Or was there traffic to shake the ground and hence the lens?

    I think you're over exposing too, ignoring the airplane; the white object and the image of Jupiter seem way over exposed.
    PAul

    Scroll down to the Sports Forum and post your sports pictures !

  8. #8
    Member Canyon Hiker's Avatar
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    Re: What is this in the sky??

    Paul, I guess you didn't understand what I was saying, or I miss construed my words. I know this is not a meteor. I was speaking in general when I said what direction I usually shoot.

    "From the shape of the trails on the airplane lights I think your white object is just one stationary object, not two". I agree

    "Looks like you have serious problems with camera shake throughout both images.
    Was it windy that night?
    Or was there traffic to shake the ground and hence the lens?" Like I previously said "My focal point was the plane to start. My camera was on a tri-pod but I was pressing the shutter button manually. I live about 20 miles away from any person way up in the woods in the Tahoe National Forest.

    "I think you're over exposing too, ignoring the airplane; the white object and the image of Jupiter seem way over exposed." I couldn't agree more.

    Thanks for the post. I really appreciate you filling me in on my previous post about the meteor shower that I thought I captured. I thought it was really strange to see a meteor fall that slow through the sky. But your info assured me it was no meteor and I learned something new about satellites after researching it on the net, much appreciated. I am totally new to shooting sky shots at night, and every piece of info I receive I really appreciate. I am now trying some practice shots to try and capture the upcoming Geminids on the night of December 13/14 . I am spoiled by a spectacular, no smog environment where I live. This is a prime area for astrophotgraphers. I see them on occasion where I live with there telescopes and unbelievable equipment they use to capture outer space. Without a doubt I will be stopping to talk with the next one I see on the side of the road to pick there brains for info.

    darin
    "There are many paths to the top of the mountain, but only one view"
    "You can't depend on your eyes when your imagination is out of focus".
    "Whenever man comes up with a better mousetrap, nature immediately comes up with a better mouse."

  9. #9
    Panarus biarmicus Moderator (Sports) SmartWombat's Avatar
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    Re: What is this in the sky??

    I reckon on the 5 second exposure it's your hand shaking the camera.
    I am surprised that it doesn't settle down even in 5 or 6 seconds.

    I was amazed how blurry my long exposure city night shots were in London, I was shooting from a bridge and people walking across it (combined with my long lens) shook the tripod enough to make long exposures unusable.
    But I couldn't see a reason for yours, having not noticed the manual shutter release.

    If you have to use long exposure I would try with mirror lockup, and using the self timer on at least 10 seconds delay. Saves the cost of a remote cable release!


    You have a wonderful location !
    For meteor photography, you don't need a long telephoto.
    Because the meteors are spread out all over the sky appearing to radiate from the constellation that gave them their name. Point a 35mm or 50mm lens in the direction of Gemini and hope.
    PAul

    Scroll down to the Sports Forum and post your sports pictures !

  10. #10
    Member Canyon Hiker's Avatar
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    Re: What is this in the sky??

    Quote Originally Posted by SmartWombat
    I reckon on the 5 second exposure it's your hand shaking the camera.
    I am surprised that it doesn't settle down even in 5 or 6 seconds.

    I was amazed how blurry my long exposure city night shots were in London, I was shooting from a bridge and people walking across it (combined with my long lens) shook the tripod enough to make long exposures unusable.
    But I couldn't see a reason for yours, having not noticed the manual shutter release.

    If you have to use long exposure I would try with mirror lockup, and using the self timer on at least 10 seconds delay. Saves the cost of a remote cable release!


    You have a wonderful location !
    For meteor photography, you don't need a long telephoto.
    Because the meteors are spread out all over the sky appearing to radiate from the constellation that gave them their name. Point a 35mm or 50mm lens in the direction of Gemini and hope.
    Thanks for the info. Are you familiar with canons EOS software? I didn't have a use for it until I recently started shooting these type of shots. You control the camera with a PC. This eliminates any camera shake. The feature I like the most is this. You can program the camera to take as many shot as as you want. In short, I set the camera on a tripod. Hook it up to my pc. Program it to take 50 pictures with a 1min shutter/f4, and walk away from it. The pc does the rest. This is a great feature for night shots. Below is a screen shot I did right now while controlling the camera through my laptop.


    What is this in the sky??-image6.jpg
    "There are many paths to the top of the mountain, but only one view"
    "You can't depend on your eyes when your imagination is out of focus".
    "Whenever man comes up with a better mousetrap, nature immediately comes up with a better mouse."

  11. #11
    Panarus biarmicus Moderator (Sports) SmartWombat's Avatar
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    Re: What is this in the sky??

    I looked at the EOS software, and then put it away.
    I did play with it a bit, and decided it was of no use for me.
    For shots like you're doing I'd have to drive at least 50 miles to get out of the city's orange glow.
    I don't have a mains cable that long for the computer

    Does the modern EOS Software (I looked at it 5 years ago with my 20D) work with mirror lockup and live view on the newer cameras?
    PAul

    Scroll down to the Sports Forum and post your sports pictures !

  12. #12
    Member byjamesderuvoDHQ's Avatar
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    Re: What is this in the sky??

    Just remember, your camera may be still, but the earth isn't! Nor is jupiter. So if you're using too long of a shutter speed, that may cause the issue.

  13. #13
    Panarus biarmicus Moderator (Sports) SmartWombat's Avatar
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    Re: What is this in the sky??

    So if you're using too long of a shutter speed, that may cause the issue.
    ROF,L
    That will only product smooth curves, not spirals and random wiggles.
    PAul

    Scroll down to the Sports Forum and post your sports pictures !

  14. #14
    Member Canyon Hiker's Avatar
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    Re: What is this in the sky??

    Quote Originally Posted by SmartWombat
    I looked at the EOS software, and then put it away.
    I did play with it a bit, and decided it was of no use for me.
    For shots like you're doing I'd have to drive at least 50 miles to get out of the city's orange glow.
    I don't have a mains cable that long for the computer

    Does the modern EOS Software (I looked at it 5 years ago with my 20D) work with mirror lockup and live view on the newer cameras?
    Yeah I hear ya paul, It does work with live view, I tried once w/ mirror lockout and couldn't get it to work. You can also fine tune the focus with EOS in Live View.
    "There are many paths to the top of the mountain, but only one view"
    "You can't depend on your eyes when your imagination is out of focus".
    "Whenever man comes up with a better mousetrap, nature immediately comes up with a better mouse."

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