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Jun, 2018
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Temple Of The Moon MIlky Way This image was taken in a remote area of Capitol Reef National Parkin Utah. The “Temple” was lit using 5 separate static LED lights. This particular image is a 5-panel panorama stacked with 9 frames per panel for a total o



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Behind The Lens

Location
This image was taken at Capitol Reef National Park near Hanksville, Utah. It is a very remote area known as Temple Of The Sun and Moon. The hoodoo pictured here is the Temple Of The Moon
Time
This was taken around 12am if memory serves me correctly
Lighting
There were four of us shooting that night and we all used our lights and spent about an hour strategically placing all of our lights in various places at the base of Templ Of The Moon. We would place them walk out into the distance to view how the light was falling. It took a lot of coordination between all of us to get them set up just right to try to light the entire hoodoo and have enough shadows to make them ighting look interesting.
Equipment
I shot this with a Nikon D810, with a Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 lens. I use a Really Right Stuff BH55 ball head on a set of Induro sticks for my tripod. The light I provided to the group was a cheap LED brick light with a warming diffuser on it.
Inspiration
I had been wanting to shoot the Milky Way iver this spot for a long time and finally got down there to make this image a reality
Editing
This is a 2 row, 5 panel pano and each panel was shot 9 times to stack for noise reduction. So I would shoot the 1st panel top left and take 9 shots, then pan to my right a bit and repeat. I did this 5 times for the Sky, then repeated for the foreground. So there is a total of 90 images here plus dark frames to reduce noise even more. Each panel of 9 images (plus 6 dark frames) was then stacked in median blend mode in Photoshop for noise reduction purposes. Then all 10 panels were stitched together using PS photo merge to create the panorama. There was such a gap in between the 1st and last shot of this pano that the Milky Way has a little “zig zag” in it once stitched, but I actually liked how it turned out and decided not to try to fix it. I think it’s a very unique image and I am truly proud of this one. This image is MASSIVE too. The finished pano is 135x98”
In my camera bag
I normally have my D810x tamron 15-30, sigma 24-70, nikon 50mm, rokinon 14mm, sigma 70-200, a set of VU filters, lots of batteries, and tons of SD cards. I carry a wired and wireless trigger, a video light, and for certain shoots a flashpoint xplor600 strobe.
Feedback
Just BET THERE! get out under the darkest skies you can find, and keep trying. Stacking will improve noise in your final image and try to take the shots as fast as you can using a timer or intervalometer to avoid camera shake. I used the self timer for all panels here. The max number of shots using the self timer on the D810 is 9, so that’s why each panel got 9 images for stacking. Even 6-8 would work though, and in hindsight I might have only done 6 to make it go faster and avoid the “zig zag” pattern in the galaxy.

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