• Joshua Tree Star Trail

    Shooting Stars at Joshua Tree National Park

     

    As I mentioned in a recent post, just over a month ago I went camping in Joshua Tree National Park with my friend and photographer Lennis Wayne. Shooting images for a star trail was on my mental “shot list” and we were fortunate enough to have 2 nights with clear skies. The park is all desert, although what’s interesting to me is that there are 2 different desert climates in the park; the Colorado and the Mojave deserts. The  Colorado desert is part of the larger Sonoran desert that spans the Southwest U.S.. At below 3,000 feet in elevation, the Colorado desert covers the eastern portion of the park. The Mojave desert is higher, cooler and home to the famous Joshua Tree. The Mojave makes up the western portion of the park and contains large forests of Joshua trees. This part of the park also has unique boulder formations that look like they came from another planet.

    Now, on to the details of shooting my star trail. I have not shot many star trails that I have loved so far, but that’s mainly because I didn’t have the best location or foreground element. Well, I have to say that the Joshua tree made a great foreground for my star trail. The first image is the finished star trail. Camera info: Canon 7D with Canon 10-22 lens at 10mm, f3.5, iso 800, 2 min exposure per shot. I shot for almost 2 hours and ended up with about 50 usable images. Images were loaded into Photoshop as layers and then the blend mode changed to lighten. I also had to remove some plane trails, I didn’t know so many planes fly over the park! I will share a short video tutorial on how I removed the plane trails in a future post.

    joshua tree-2014-1430
    Click image to view large.

     

    One of my frames captured a shooting star, I thought that was pretty cool. Have a great week!

     

    joshua tree-2014-1401
    Click image to view large.
  • Welcome to My New Blog

     

    I’ve struggled a for a while debating on if I wanted to start a new blog. Almost a year ago I had malware installed on my wordpress site without my knowledge, after weeks of trying to get rid of it and feeling frustrated, I ended up shutting down the blog. I’m excited that I have decided to take another go at it. My goal with this blog is to share what I’m doing with my photography and inspire you to get out and explore our beautiful planet. Stick around and enjoy the world through my eyes.

    Sunset at Joshua Tree National Park
    Sunset at Joshua Tree National Park

    About a month ago I went on a camping/photography trip to Joshua Tree National Park. One of my “bucket list” items is to visit all of the national parks in the U.S., I’m slowly checking them off, one at a time. The spring is a great time to visit Joshua Tree, since it’s all desert, it’s warm during the day and cold at night. In fact, I was surprised how cold the nights were, I guess I didn’t think about the elevation change within the park. We camped at Jumbo Rocks Campground, what a cool place with unique boulders and Joshua Trees everywhere! This campground was centrally located in the park and made a great home base. One of my plans was to do night photography while there, unfortunately the first couple of nights were cloudy and we saw very few stars. However, we did get lucky enough to have 2 clear nights before leaving.

    Starry Night
    Starry Night (click to view large)

     

    Stay tuned next week for more images from my adventures including more from Joshua Tree National Park. Thanks for stopping by!