It’s a Picture of the Week two for one! 🙂  I mentioned last week that I had met my friend Allen out in the desert earlier this year so that we could photograph the Milky Way.  Our skies here in the eastern United States have just been destroyed with light pollution, and so we wanted to see what it would be like to photograph a sky that had almost no light pollution.  Using a dark sky finder app, we decided on a spot and drove to it – definitely an adventure!

One of the things I always like to do when I’m photographing the night sky is to include something in the foreground.  Lots of people take images of *just* the sky, and they’re beautiful, but I like the added context of something here on Earth so that people know and understand what it is they’re looking at (even though the human eye can’t see the Milky Way as it is seen by the camera here).  Using the same cactus as was in the picture last week, just getting way closer and using a much wider lens, I framed it such that the Milky Way would be behind it.

BUT, while Allen and I were messing around with pictures of the Milky Way, we had the idea to see what it would look like to photograph just the core of the Milky Way with a 50mm lens (the image above is shot with a 14mm lens).  The image below is the result.  WOW!

More next week!

–Dan Thompson

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Cades Cove
Quartzsite, AZ 85346, USA

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