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Thread: Milky Way Panoramic Shooting

  1. #1
    Ready to Print Wayno's Avatar
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    Milky Way Panoramic Shooting

    A question on shooting techniques for those who dabble in Milky Way photography (although this will apply to anyone shooting panos).

    We are getting close to Milky Way season, and I work in a very remote location.

    I'm after thoughts and suggestions on the shooting of the Milky Way where not all of the scene is covered by one shot.

    Do panoramic stitching programs (I have both Photoshop CC and the PTGui software) prefer the shots to be taken in vertical rows or horizontal rows? Should I start shooting the scene from the top left corner and pan down with each successive shot, or pan right?

    Any thoughts would be very appreciated.
    Cheers.

    Canon user and abuser.


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    Ausphotography Regular bitsnpieces's Avatar
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    Here is a guide shooting stars in general for the a7s - but I'm sure the principles can still be applied for Milky Way (maybe some tweaks)

    http://petapixel.com/2015/01/18/tuto...constellation/

    Also, panoramic? I guess you just gotta take multiple shots and then eventually stitch it all together.

    I'm still learning to just take a shot of the Milky Way - probably because I don't even know where it is to begin with so I don't know where to begin XD
    David Tran

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    Arch-Σigmoid Ausphotography Regular ameerat42's Avatar
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    Wayno. Have you considered the use of ultra-wide-angle (UWA) lenses?
    Am.
    CC, Image editing OK.

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    Account Closed tduell's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wayno View Post

    Do panoramic stitching programs (I have both Photoshop CC and the PTGui software) prefer the shots to be taken in vertical rows or horizontal rows? Should I start shooting the scene from the top left corner and pan down with each successive shot, or pan right?

    Any thoughts would be very appreciated.
    Cheers.
    Any control point finder worth it's salt should be able to cope with any pattern of shots, I think the norm is to look for matches in every pair of images...or it should be.
    There can be significant benefits in reduced processing time when using a shooting pattern that the control point finder understands, if your set of images is large.
    If you anticipate shooting a large set of images for your panos, it would be worth doing a bit of homework on what shooting patterns PS or PTGui can handle.

    Cheers,
    Terry

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    This may be a stupid question, im not sure.... But would my kit 18-55 nikon lens be able to take these shots? I've just got my first DSLR and wanting to learn how to take star trails and milky way shots once i get my tripod

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    Lightbender
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    There are no stupid questions if someone learns something from the answers. You can take these sorts of shots with "kit" lenses. The results can look great, average or awful depending on what settings you use, stability and focus, focal lengths that you use etc. All the normal things that impact whether an image is technically "good". If used within the optimal ranges of these lenses capabilities you can get excellent or at least very very good results.

    The question is whether expenditure on better glass will produce significantly better results. The answer really depends on how much that result matters to you. Assuming this is the lens we are talking about, here is a Ken Rockwell performance review which points out that from a cost to result perspective, these lenses can perform just as well or in certain cases better than the more expensive glass, but again it depends on what sort of results you are after. There are always going to be some things that a more expensive lens can do better than their less expensive brethren, but for general purpose shooting on a budget, the kit lenses can hold their own.

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    Thats great, thanks Grant S! Will have a read!

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    Wayno's Avatar
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    Thanks for your thoughts guys.
    I'm looking forward to the Milky Way season.
    I figure the Milky Way is lower in the sky at the start of its run, and gets higher in the sky later.
    I have also purchased a Samyang 14mm lens, so that should enable me to get a great field of view.

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    Dont forget to show us how you go I'd love to see some pics!

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    Gday,
    was out n about last night having a play.. still got a long way to go.. but i think im getting there finally
    using my canon 6d, 16-35mm about 20-30 sec and as open as i can set it.. iso below 1000
    and a bit of editing to bring out shadows and get rid of the purple hues..
    Cheers n Beers
    Shane..


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