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Taken 9-Oct-15
Visitors 52

14 of 16 photos
Categories & Keywords

Subcategory:Night Sky
Subcategory Detail:
Keywords:Long exposure, light, sky, night, stars, star, exposure, wide angle, starry, star trails, startrails, Coates, Fittleworth, Pulborough, Church, St Agatha, Downs, South Downs, sussex, west sussex, countryside, outside, timer, graves, religion, church of England, old, saxon, Norman, Polaris, north star, north pole, celestial, night sky, sony, A700, fisheye, samyang, photoshop, topaz, layers, galaxy, science, space, milky way, astronomy
Photo Info

Dimensions5340 x 3560
Original file size7.56 MB
Image typeJPEG
Color spacesRGB
Date taken9-Oct-15 20:16
Date modified10-Oct-15 17:52
Shooting Conditions

Camera makeSONY
Camera modelDSLR-A700
Focal length0 mm
Focal length (35mm)0 mm
Max lens aperturef/1
Exposure39s at f/1
FlashNot fired, compulsory mode
Exposure bias0 EV
Exposure modeManual
Exposure prog.Manual
ISO speedISO 800
Metering modeCenter-weighted average
Digital zoom0x
Star Trails St Agatha Church Coates

Star Trails St Agatha Church Coates

This shot was taken on a fairly clear night last Friday. The church building seen today is little different from that built by the Normans early in the twelfth century. It is situated in the tiny village of Coates Nr Fittleworth to the north of the South Downs. The light pollution is from the small town of Pulborough about 3 miles north east.

It is a fairly good time of year to take Star Trails with sunset early enough to take them at a reasonable hour but not yet freezing cold. I started the sequence at 8.15pm. Note that the Exif is taken from one of the images. The image is a blend of 76 shots at 39 seconds so 50 minutes. I had taken shots for 90 minutes but a temporary layer of cloud came over for 30 minutes so I left out the later ones. The images were taken with an interval timer while I read an ebook on a bench behind the Church. An Owl hooted in a tree nearby. I think only photographers’ would understand why one would spend a Friday evening in a dark and creepy graveyard!

The foreground and Church were lit with a head torch which is also very handy for sorting things out in the dark. The star images were later combined in Startrails.exe and the foreground copied in as a layer with a mask. When taking the image I first composed and found the North Star with the Google Sky Map App. The camera was set to manual, aperture f3.5, ISO 800. White Balance was set to custom at 4800 and shutter speed set to Bulb. Length of shutter speed was set in the timer shutter release. Then I set the camera to continuous mode. It is very important to turn off all long exposure and high ISO noise reduction to avoid increasing the gap between exposures. The remote timer shutter release I use for star trails sets the delay until the sequence starts, the number of shots and the interval between shots (set at a second) and the exposure time. The versions to fit Canon and Nikon are only £12 and I have a full review on my website at