ONE DAY COURSE
3:00 PM – 11:00 PM
Digital photography enables us to capture the beauty of the night sky in unprecedented detail. This astrophotography workshop will introduce students to the wide range of astronomical phenomena that can be photographed using an ordinary digital single lens reflex camera (without a telescope). A full explanation will be provided of techniques to make stunning images of stars, planets, the moon and the Milky Way, in conjunction with terrestrial landscapes. The course also covers photographing star trails as well as rare, elusive and fast-moving astronomical phenomena such as meteors, aurorae and eclipses.
Sufficient scientific detail will be included to enable course participants to understand the astronomical phenomena they can photograph and the extraordinary variety of scales of the Universe that can be recorded with an ordinary digital camera, ranging from ~100 km in the case of aurorae and meteors to 25 million million million km for the Andromeda galaxy.
A licence has been granted by the National Trust to enable the group to undertake an evening practical session photographing Lacock Abbey at night. This will enable students to put into practice what they have learned, with guidance in the field. If the sky is clear, we will photograph the Abbey with stars above. Course dates have been selected to optimise moonlight conditions.
To get the most out of the course students should already understand the basics of exposure, shutter speed, aperture and ISO; and be comfortable handling their cameras using manual exposure mode.
To ensure individual attention, the astro photography course is limited to six participants.
This astrophotography workshop will provide a comprehensive introduction to landscape astrophotography and all the technical details needed to photograph the night sky with a digital SLR camera. Subjects covered in depth are:
• The moon
• Moonlit landscapes
• Stars and constellations
• Milky Way
• Aurora borealis (northern lights)
• Lunar eclipses
• Solar eclipses
• Star trails
• Selecting foregrounds
• Lighting foregrounds
• Exposure at night
• Focus at night
- Introduction to landscape astrophotography
- Photographing the moon and moonlit landscapes
- Photographing planets, stars and the Milky Way
- Selecting foreground subjects
- Using artificial light and moonlight to illuminate foregrounds
- Photographing aurorae and meteors
- Photographing eclipses
- Photographing and Processing Star Trails
- Lacock Abbey Astrophotography Shoot
Camera Technical Requirements
• camera capable of operating in manual mode with control
over aperture, shutter speed and ISO
• bring the widest and fastest lens you have, ideally f/2 or f/4 wide angle lens
(e.g. 24mm on full frame or 18mm on cropped sensor)
• remote cable release if you have one
• small torch
The Tutor – Robert Harvey
Professional photographer Robert Harvey BA ARPS EFIAP CEnv CSci MCIWEM has created Natural World Photography to share his passion for creative images of landscapes, wildlife and the beauty of the night sky. He is a Chartered Natural Scientist and Associate of the Royal Photographic Society, inspired by remote locations such as coasts, mountains and deserts, where untamed land is sculpted by nature. More than 280 of his photographs have been accepted in international exhibitions worldwide, leading to him receiving the Excellence award of the Fédération Internationale de l’Art Photographique.
Robert leads photography tours throughout Britain, as well as overseas, to enable keen photographers to develop their skills in some of the world’s most inspiring locations. His courses at Lacock Photography bring this extensive knowledge to his own county of Wiltshire and provide a solid grounding in photographic theory, along with expert guidance on practical photography in the field.
Robert regularly lectures to specialist photographic audiences around the country and is the author of several books on photography and astronomy including “Photographing the Heavens” (2019), “Night Sky” (2019) and “Photographing Wiltshire” (2020).
Astro Photography Workshop Content
The Astrophotography workshop will be delivered as a classroom/workshop session followed, after a light supper, by a landscape astrophotography shoot under the guidance of Robert Harvey. “Please note the photoshoot will be dependent upon suitable weather and in the event of thick fog or persistent rain would be replaced by a Lightroom processing session using RAW images brought by participants of either astrophotography landscape or terrestrial landscape subjects.”.