- Posted July 19, 2014 by
Twentynine Palms, California
This iReport is part of an assignment:
Your views of space and stars
Star trails above Spanish Dagger in Joshua Tree Cottonwood Campground on 5/29
This shot is a combination of 463 fifteen second exposures at aperture f1.8 and ISO 1600. The shot is of the North Star (Polaris) on an extremely clear night with a new moon. The first shot was done at 11:22 PM and I let my Canon T3i DSLR and Canon EF 28mm lens create the magic until about 1:22AM. The Cottonwood Campground is the darkest part of Joshua Tree National Park and is home to many Yucca schidigera also known as Spanish Dagger trees as shown on the bottom of the shot. I tried to compose this with as many stars as I could, while adding the plants to the shot. There were several planes that were edited out of the shot with Photoshop. I stacked them with StarStax using blending mode. The result is by far the most intense star trails photo I have created to date. I've been shooting astrophotography for the last year and just picked up my first DSLR back in 2011. The learning curve has been steep but it is immensely rewarding. Now I have begun to sell some of my work and I'm always looking for clear, dark skies to appreciate the universe.