Friday, December 14, 2012

Week 39: Geminid Shower

Since I've lived in Kansas I've experienced two meteor showers. Each one I've tried to photograph by going out super late at night, when the meteors are at their peak, and each time I've utterly failed to get a photograph of one. The first meteor shower I barely saw any meteors and the second I didn't see a single one.

Last night was my third meteor shower, and I had high hopes for this one. Not only was it a new moon, but there were actually two meteor showers happening at once. Leading up to last night I had seen random shooting stars, so I figured my chances were good.

I left the house around 12:30 and drove half an hour to a place I knew would be relatively dark and had some interesting things to use as subjects. If there's one thing I've learned about star photography lately is that you need a subject other than the stars. It was a little terrifying being way out in the country, away from most civilization, in the middle of the night, while hearing coyotes in the not-so-distant distance.

My first ever official photo of a meteor!!! Not a lot of subject in this photo, but I was just so thrilled to capture a meteor in the shot. It was nice and bright. It was so exciting.

This one is a little darker than I would have liked. I would have liked the truck lit up a tad more, but the light painting that I tried didn't really work out. 

I like this one quite a bit. Not only did a get a meteor in the shot, but I also got the trail of an airplane. The horizon was kind of cloudy this night, so lights from the city were brighter than I would have wanted. Earlier in the evening I was trying to fight it, but at this point I started to embrace the extra light and use it to create silhouettes of the cars I was photographing. 

Even though it doesn't contain a meteor, this might be my favorite photo. I really like the silhouette of the truck and the way the city lights look like the setting sun.

Probably my favorite photo that includes a meteor. Not only is there a nice silhouette of the truck, but you can kind of see some detail of the front. 

No meteor, but I did get another airplane. 

All in all a very successful night. I was seeing between one and two meteors a minute, but it was still tricky to capture them in a photo. It was a bit cold, but considering it was the middle of December it was quite pleasant.

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