TimHallPhoto PRO
TimHallPhoto

Wind Farm Trails



Composed of around 200 or so 30 second exposures, I was pretty happy with the way this turned out considering the conditions weren't great. There was an al...
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Composed of around 200 or so 30 second exposures, I was pretty happy with the way this turned out considering the conditions weren't great. There was an almost full moon adding a lot of ambient light to the scene. It did help expose the foreground and the turbine though, and helped to pick out the rotating blades too. It was a pretty chilly night, even if it does look more summery!
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Categories


21 Comments | Report
vinayks
 
vinayks February 26, 2016
Nicely done...
TimHallPhoto PRO
TimHallPhoto February 27, 2016
Thank you...
Terry310 PRO+
 
Terry310 May 03, 2016
Great combination of the star trails and windmill blade trails. Well done.
TimHallPhoto PRO
TimHallPhoto May 20, 2016
Thanks!
Word_On_Adventure
 
Word_On_Adventure May 08, 2016
Awesome Shot! i LOVE photographing turbines, the sound they make as the turn in the silence of the night is absolutely magical!
TimHallPhoto PRO
TimHallPhoto May 20, 2016
Thank you!
lewishenderson
 
lewishenderson May 20, 2016
Wow! Amazing picture! What software did you use to edit the photo?
nancyleigh
 
nancyleigh May 20, 2016
nice
TimHallPhoto PRO
 
TimHallPhoto July 04, 2016
A massive thank you to all those who voted for my photo, liked, commented and followed me, it's very much appreciated! And a big thank you to Viewbug too for creating such an amazing platform for sharing images!
JoyceDickens PRO
 
JoyceDickens July 05, 2016
This absolutely superb work Tim; Congratulations on your win!!!
TimHallPhoto PRO
TimHallPhoto July 05, 2016
Thank you Joyce!
Ch3Rpi
 
Ch3Rpi August 21, 2016
Beautiful! well done, Tim!
MikeW PRO+
 
MikeW August 27, 2016
A lot of work in this shot! Certainly paid off - it's amazing! Congrats, fellow finalist!
TimHallPhoto PRO
TimHallPhoto September 01, 2016
Thanks Mike! Congrats to you too on making the finalists!
annahazlewood
 
annahazlewood September 24, 2016
Gorgeous
TimHallPhoto PRO
TimHallPhoto December 05, 2016
Thank you!
tmlakshmi PRO+
 
tmlakshmi October 31, 2016
How I wish I could take a shot like this. Superb. Voted
TimHallPhoto PRO
TimHallPhoto December 05, 2016
Thank you so much!
mikegatt
 
mikegatt December 07, 2016
Awesome shot!
TimHallPhoto PRO
TimHallPhoto December 07, 2016
Thanks Mike!
DreamCapturedImages
 
DreamCapturedImages December 21, 2016
Wonderful! How much time apart did you take each shot?
TimHallPhoto PRO
TimHallPhoto April 27, 2017
Hey! There was a second in between each shot to minimise the gaps in the trails
davidvaldez
 
davidvaldez January 26, 2017
Of all the pictures I've seen, I think this is the best ever. I'm absolutely amazed and in addition, it makes me ponder my existence in the universe. Outstanding, just an outstanding photo and creativity!
Zubuano
 
Zubuano April 27, 2017
Spectacular!
podesta
 
podesta May 16, 2017
Fantastic capture
Svea_Knetzke
 
Svea_Knetzke May 17, 2017
Excellent shot!
daniel_corona27
 
daniel_corona27 July 02, 2017
I've seen this in the internet. It was published in 2014 I believe
LisaZachImages
 
LisaZachImages October 07, 2017
Beautifully done
TimHallPhoto PRO
 
TimHallPhoto April 17, 2018
Thank you everyone for your kind words (and likes!)
aaronbohmer
 
aaronbohmer July 29, 2018
Wow, so beautiful

Behind The Lens

Location
This image was taken in Oxfordshire, about 40 minutes from Oxford itself, at a place called Westmill Wind Farm.
Time
I'd been keeping my eye on the weather for weeks, trying to find a clear night which coincided with me not having anything else to do. I'd had the vision for the shot for a while, it was just waiting for a clear night! The forecast looked good so I drove out to the location around 8:30pm (it was still winter so the darkness rolled in nice and early) set the shot up and waited for the few remaining clouds to clear. I was out there for about 3 and a half hours in total, and it was cold!
Lighting
The main issue I have living in Oxford is light pollution and finding locations with dark enough skies to really capture the stars. After a couple of test shots, I decided I'd use the colour created by this light pollution as part of the final image. It was still dark enough to capture the stars, but the light from the distant towns and cities worked in my favour. There was also a fairly bright moon in the sky that night, and I thought I'd use this to my advantage too, as it was lighting the foreground and the turbine very nicely.
Equipment
My camera is a Nikon D800, and for this shot I used the widest lens I had at my disposal, a Nikon 16-35mm f4 at the full 16mm. The setup was placed on my Vanguard Abeo tripod, and then my Hahnel Combi TF intervalometer (love this bit of kit) was fitted to the hot shoe.
Inspiration
I had driven past this location many times on my way to and from Bristol, and the turbines always caught my eye. I just had to use them in a shot, it was just a matter of how. I did some research using Google Earth to work out which way they were facing and when I discovered I could get a decent composition facing north, I had to go for the star trail approach using Polaris aligned above one of the turbines. The rotational symmetry was just too good an opportunity to miss!
Editing
The main post-processing was stacking the images to create the trails, for which I used Photoshop. I know there are multiple star stacking programs for doing this, but I wanted the complete freedom to test it out myself and learn more about the process. It also allowed me to keep all the images in separate layers for any fine tweaking I needed to do. This turned out to be a lot! Once the images were on my Mac screen, I noticed how many trails had been left by aircraft, all of which distracted from the stars. It was a long process of going through each layer and removing the unwanted light sources! Once this was done, I did some levels and curves adjustments to bring out the stars a little more and tweaked the saturation of the colours very slightly. The only other thing to do was to make sure the rotation of the tubing blades was visible using a tiny bit of dodging.
In my camera bag
I normally carry around far more than I need, I'm always a 'just in case' person, but the main equipment is my Nikon D800 (which I love), a Nikon 16 - 35mm f4 lens, my Nikon 50mm prime, and a Nikon 105mm Macro. There is always a tripod (Vanguard Abeo) strapped to my bag and I nearly always carry around my Hahnel Intervalometer too (you never know when it's going to come in handy! I also like to keep my Nikon SB900 speed light with me....just in case....
Feedback
For star trail photography (or any astrophotography), the darker the skies the better, depending on the look you're going for. I managed to create something I'm really proud of in conditions which were really not that perfect! Other than that, a nice sturdy tripod is a must, and a wide angle lens with as wide a maximum aperture as possible will work perfectly. Some cameras now have a built in intervalometer, so this piece of equipment isn;t always necessary, but I fond them much easier to work with. For these circular trails, finding the north star (polaris) is a must, but there are lots of creative opportunities playing around with the composition done slightly differently.

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