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W. 
 

Shoot the Perseids tonight!


 
  Perseids
Perseids
© W.
Miscellaneous Does...
 
 

Tonight is the start of the yearly returning Perseid meteor shower with dozens, sometimes even hundreds, of meteors 'falling stars' per hour. Best visible after midnight.
The Perseid meteor shower lasts about 2 weeks, but the most active nights are tonight and the next 3 or 4.

Can you make a better image than this?


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8/9/2008 9:29:58 AM

 
A C
BetterPhoto Member Since: 12/6/2004
  "Serious meteor hunters will begin their watch early, on Monday evening, August 11th, around 9 pm when Perseus first rises in the northeast."

quoted from: http://science.nasa.gov/headlines/y2008/22jul_perseiddawn.htm


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8/9/2008 12:52:42 PM

 
Raymond H. Kemp
BetterPhoto Member Since: 4/2/2004
  W.S., you're not trying to suggest to us that YOU made that photo?


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8/9/2008 9:22:24 PM

 
W.   
No, Raymond. That is a wikipedia photo.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Perseids


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8/10/2008 2:37:16 AM

 
  The absolute peak of the shower will happen between 3 and 5 am on Tuesday morning. Get out the tripods and have the remote shutter releases ready. They are predicting 40-60 meteors per hour.


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8/10/2008 5:32:20 PM

 
A C
BetterPhoto Member Since: 12/6/2004
  where did you hear that? Are you going to shoot 'em? I'm certainly interested!


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8/10/2008 10:23:29 PM

 

BetterPhoto Member
  I got it off of yahoo. Yes I'm going to be shooting them. I will be shooting with my 35. I hate waiting for the sony to process frames. Besides, I know my Minolta like the back of my hand. I've got it down to a science.


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8/11/2008 6:30:50 PM

 

BetterPhoto Member
  Some tips on shooting a meteor shower.
1) Don't use a long lens. Long lenses will have too narrow a view to to effectively shoot the event. a 50mm lens (35mm is optimal. Too wide a lens or lens setting will detract from the magnitude of the event.
2) A tripod and some kind of a remote trigger iss mandatory. You will need to use very slow shutter speeds, in some cases, minutes. You will need to have your camera set securely to avoid camera shake.
3) patience is a must. You may have long intervals where nothing is seen. To photograph the event, you must be ready to stand next to a camera with the shutter open to capture nothing. Prepare for long waits.
4) have fun and make sure to enjoy the event with your family. It's worth the looks on your children's faces when they see their first meteor.

The Earthgrazing meteors will begin appearing in the northeast sky around nine pm. This will be an all night event, with the best viewing after two am when the moon sets. The peak viewing time will be between 3-5am and may involve some clusters of meteors.

Have fun and we want to see pictures posted.


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8/11/2008 7:17:54 PM

 

BetterPhoto Member
  One more thing. get in as dark an area as possible. Try to get away from the city lights, street lights, porch lights, or flashlights. Allow about 15 minutes for your eyes to adjust to the dark. This will afford you the most enjoyment of the event.


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8/11/2008 7:45:01 PM

 
A C
BetterPhoto Member Since: 12/6/2004
 
 
 
well okay, for my first attempt I'm at least happy I caught two.

When I took my test shots earlier (around midnight to 1), I was able to use a shutter speed around 10 seconds with an iso of 800. But when I took pics between 2 and 3:30 I had a harder time seeing the stars. I was worried a slower shutter speed wouldn't show a shooting star very well (although the regular stars would show up just fine). Even an aperture of 4 and an ISO of 3200 (out in the middle of nowhere with no lights) wasn't enough to speed up the shutter. So I stopped photographing West and turned East (the pic you see here) because the stars looked brighter and I thought it might help (I figured if the stars are brighter, maybe the shooting stars will show up better as well?).

And I know I shouldn't have used such a wide angle, but I became impatient after missing several already (and I was worried my baby would wake up while I was gone; I couldn't stay out all night). So .... a lot of things to consider next year!

The shooting star is on the right side


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8/12/2008 3:08:27 AM

 
A C
BetterPhoto Member Since: 12/6/2004
  oops, I was wrong. My ISO on this was 1600 (I changed it to 1600 after I started shooting to the East). My shutter speed was 14 seconds


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8/12/2008 3:12:57 AM

 
W.   
Good first effort, Cherylann. It's a learning curve, as you found out.

"a lot of things to consider next year!"

The good news is that you won't have to wait for next year! Your next opportunity is around November 17: the Leonids.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Leonids

Have fun!


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8/12/2008 7:50:13 AM

 
W.   
But you don't even have to wait for the Leonids: you can go out tonight, tomorrow night, and the night after to try the Perseids once more!


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8/12/2008 7:53:51 AM

 
Raymond H. Kemp
BetterPhoto Member Since: 4/2/2004
  Cherylann, what lens did you use?


Ray


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8/12/2008 8:01:09 AM

 
A C
BetterPhoto Member Since: 12/6/2004
  I used my 17-40 on a Canon 40D (crop sensor). Right now all I have is the 17-40 f4 L, 50mm f1.8, and 200mm 2.8 L. I had the 28-135 but sold it to afford the L lenses since it wasn't fast enough for me. I prefer a fast piece of glass over zoom right now. And let's face it, when doing a portrait it's easy enough to use my legs for zoom.

And like I mentioned, I grew impatient (and very tired). I have to give it up to people who do landscape photography!!! I think it's easier to get lighting and other stuff right with portraiture because I can move people around the lighting conditions.


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8/12/2008 8:53:21 AM

 
Raymond H. Kemp
BetterPhoto Member Since: 4/2/2004
  Actually, I think your image came out quite well. Yes, you didn't get the showers, but you did a nice job capturing the stars and a very nice horizon. I like it!

Ray


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8/12/2008 9:08:14 AM

 

BetterPhoto Member
  Excellent first attempt Cherylann. I hope you had fun and enjoyed the fireworks. Mama Nature was cruel to me. I had an overcast sky.


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8/12/2008 3:17:00 PM

 
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