View Full Version here: : Back from the frozen North... it's processing time!
04-03-2012, 05:44 PM
Here are some Aurora Borealis images taken from locations in Norway on Fred Watson's Fire in the Sky tour during late Jan/early Feb 2012. Camera was a Nikon D700 and I used a 14-24 f/2.8 lens, mostly at 14mm and f/2.8.
The first image was taken from a fjord near Alta in gale force winds. The next three were taken at Lyngen Lodge on Lygen Fjord in slightly more civilised weather and after some very nice food and wine. The last three were taken from a soccer field near Tromso. The aurora that night was fantastic. In retrospect we should have found a taxi driver and paid him a small fortune to drive us to the nearest dark/clear skies...
Higher resolution pics are here: http://rickstevenson.smugmug.com/Travel/Fire-in-the-Sky-Aurora/21746905_nhNNwQ
I have a couple of thousand aurora images, so my next project is to sort through them and build a best-of time lapse video.
04-03-2012, 05:47 PM
:eyepop: So cool Rick. Green with envy. Keep'em coming! :thumbsup::thumbsup::thumbsup: #5 is a corker.
04-03-2012, 06:26 PM
ay yi yi, Number 5 does it for me too. :D
04-03-2012, 06:27 PM
:eyepop:Ric those pics are fantastic, almost other-worldly. Must have been something else seeing it with your own eyes. :thumbsup::thumbsup:
04-03-2012, 06:36 PM
Thanks, Marc, JJJ & Adam! It was a fantastic trip. As well as the aurora we saw some fantastic scenery, visited some interesting astronomical sites (including Esrange space centre in Kiruna, Sweden and Tycho Brahe's observatories on the island of Hven) and we got to drink lots of beer with my son in Germany.
After having such a great time it has been a struggle to settle back in at work :)
Some of the most awe inspiring shots to appear on this forum. :eyepop:
How extraordinary the auroral activity had been in Norway made evening television
news in Australia whilst you were away.
And with nothing but interminable rain on the east coast of Australia this summer,
you picked the right time to go.
For those of us who were stuck here at home far south of the Arctic circle, thanks
for letting us live part of the adventure through these remarkable images.
04-03-2012, 07:03 PM
If I lived there I wouldn't miss TV one bit:jawdrop::D:thumbsup:
04-03-2012, 07:04 PM
Beautiful work, Rick.
Very envious! Wish I'd known about this thing. Is it a yearly trip or a once off? I can't imagine it being cheap, but, it would be a dream come true.
I've been looking at flights to Norway, recently, actually. :D
04-03-2012, 07:26 PM
#5 is a corker! Awesome stuff.
Wow, amazingly beautilful images Rick, sooooo envious!!:thumbsup:
Tis my dream next year to spot some aurora, hopefully from Tassie, unlkess I win some $$$ and can head way up north. :thanx:
04-03-2012, 08:12 PM
ohhhh oooohhhh oooouuuuuuuuaaaahhhhh, OMG very very nice
04-03-2012, 08:37 PM
Whoa-these are really something!congratulations on such amazing captures and such a trip.Norway is one place I'd like to go for many reasons-great fly fishing,and now to see something like this-What did the airfares/travel cost pan out to be H?
Number five-well what words can we put that:eyepop:,the image of a life time,just the best.
Rick these are spectacular.
#5 is just so...bugger it words can't do justice to this one.
They are all WOW!!!!......
I love the reds in #1 it looks like lava.
#6 love the red/orange too.It looks like you arranged to have those trees floodlit.
04-03-2012, 11:40 PM
Thanks, Gary. We were a couple of days too late for the auroral display that made the news everywhere, but we certainly don't have any complaints. We were blessed with several days of clear skies and some good auroral activity. Sorry for the bad weather back here...
Thanks, H. I actually heard about the tour first on IIS: http://www.iceinspace.com.au/forum/showthread.php?t=72700
I think there's another tour of Scandinavia coming up at end of 2012. There's also a tour to the Atacama in 2013 that is very tempting!
Info at: http://www.fredwatson.com.au/Tours
Thanks, Dave! I have a 12AXE that is a corker as well ;)
I hope you get a chance to do it, Liz!
Thanks, H0ughy :lol:
Thanks, Chris. I'm not a particularly experienced landscape photographer so I consider myself lucky to have managed a few nice images. Credit goes mostly to the tricky lady, Madam Aurora! A little experience with astro imaging certainly helped as well.
Thanks, Ken. The light in #1 was provided by someone bumbling around with a red LED torch. I was a bit annoyed at the time, but it was a happy accident. #6 was from a few lights around the soccer field. We had car headlights flashing at times. It was not a great location, but you do the best with what you can and sometimes it turns out better than you expected.
05-03-2012, 10:30 AM
The flights I checked ranged between $1,650 and $2K.
Thanks for the links and the information. I've sent off an enquiry. Cheers!
05-03-2012, 10:33 AM
Unbelievable, brilliant images.
#5 and #6 rock my socks off!
05-03-2012, 10:35 AM
Awesome, just awesome!
Defiantly on my list to do before I get too old!
05-03-2012, 12:27 PM
Bloody hell Rick, I'm gobsmacked. To think that I was going to go on this trip, but had to reconsider. AARRRRRRGGGHHHHHHHHHHhhhhhhhHh!!!!! !!!!!
It is DEFINITELY on my agenda.
Beautiful work, you lucky so and so.
05-03-2012, 02:32 PM
Magnificent images. So well done. What ISO did you use?
I recently got this lens - wow, how good is that?
05-03-2012, 02:41 PM
They're all great thanks.
05-03-2012, 03:10 PM
Stunning, Well done :thumbsup:
05-03-2012, 04:07 PM
Absolutely beautiful, all of them. Some great work there :) Thanks for sharing this.
05-03-2012, 09:43 PM
I certainly would recommend a trip to one or both poles while the sun is active, Gary.
Thanks, Chris. It is a shame you couldn't make it, but there's always next year :)
Thanks, Greg. It's a lovely lens! I was mainly using ISO 1600. I took bias frames and darks but they didn't make much difference to the final result when I tried them. You don't need a cooled camera when the ambient is -27C ;)
06-03-2012, 05:09 PM
Stunning Stunning Stunning Stunning:eyepop: Stunning Stunning
06-03-2012, 08:30 PM
Rick - no doubt a dream come true! I really enjoyed looking at your pics and imagining that I was there seeing it too. What shutter speed did you typically use? Some of them look as though you have captured some movement.
06-03-2012, 10:16 PM
Thanks, Zubenel :)
Thanks, Chris. Yes, a dream come true indeed!
I was mainly using 10 and 15 second exposures. In retrospect, I probably could have gotten away with shorter exposures on the last night (images 5, 6 and 7) as the aurora was brighter and faster moving. Unfortunately, we only had an hour away from the lights of Tromso city that night (due to regulations about how much sleep our bus driver had to get) and there was little time to experiment. The earlier nights the aurora was quite slow moving but that night it was shimmering and there were rapid (perhaps even sub second) movements of small scale features.
06-03-2012, 11:55 PM
Rick - those shots are amazing! What an experience. Can't wait for the time lapses. Will look forward to hearing your tales when our paths cross again (planning to go to Leyburn on 23/24 March if the weather gods oblige)
07-03-2012, 11:32 AM
Four, five and six float my boat.
Good work mate.
07-03-2012, 12:13 PM
You sure know how to make an impact, what an experience and to have David with you too!
Amazing light balance in your shots to catch the local ambience in contrast to to heavenly visions.
Catch up soon.
07-03-2012, 02:04 PM
simply stunning images
07-03-2012, 06:04 PM
As others have said...simply brilliant!! You have excelled yourself with these magnificent shots. Glad to hear the trip was a success.
Looking forward to seeing these and video's on the big screen at the next OGM.
Catch you then, Geoff
07-03-2012, 08:29 PM
Thanks, David! Hope to catch up soon.
Thanks very much, Baz.
Thanks, David. Hope your G11 is all sorted now?
We had a great time, thanks Geoff. See you in a few weeks...
08-03-2012, 12:14 AM
Pure gold a treat to look at.
Thx for sharing.
It would of been the best ever trip.
08-03-2012, 07:44 AM
Appreciate the views Rick, thanks. All the best.
09-03-2012, 11:42 AM
Thanks, Kev & Lester!
10-03-2012, 12:54 PM
What a glorious sight. It must have been a privilege to see it first hand.
12-03-2012, 09:15 AM
Certainly was! Thanks, Rowland.
12-03-2012, 09:18 AM
What does it look like, naked eye? How visible are they?
Grey, or is there any colour naked eye?
12-03-2012, 09:53 AM
What we saw was mostly monochrome, Mike, a bit like a bright nebula through a scope. I presume it wasn't bright enough to stimulate the cones in our eyes, just the rods.
Half of our group was at a lodge with dark skies the night of the big display in Tromso and some of them said they could see colour. That night the aurora appeared to be moving much more rapidly as well, especially the bottom of the "curtains".
According to the aurora predictions what we saw were only low to moderate strength displays.
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