The end-all-be-all in astrophotography is Britain's Insight Investment Astronomy Photographer of the Year photo contest, sponsored by the Greenwich Royal Observatory Museum. This is the World Series of night sky photos, the largest of its kind, and this year my picture, Holding Due North, has been shortlisted in the contest. It has "already beaten out thousands of other entries," and secured a place beside some of the absolute best astro photos in the world.
I remember when I began taking star trail pictures - invariably leaving my camera to its remote with incorrect settings that resulted in mornings of viewing unusable photos. It is been a trial and error process, but one not without some humor. I've had mule deer lick the lens of my camera, seen great horned owls perch on top of century-old buildings I used in my foreground, seen the tracks of a black bear who walked tight circles around my tripod, and occasionally, if returning in the dark to gather my gear, have wondered, "Now, just where in the hell did I set this thing up at?"
I have always loved the sky at night. The depth of our universe - what unimaginably tiny portion of it we can see - the soft band of the Milky Way, arcing across Montana like a celestial rainbow, or the orange glow of a harvest moon. Drawn to all things off the beaten path, night sky photography is another way for me to explore what often goes unseen.
Please look at the link attached here, and share it, too, a film created from some of this year's Insight Astronomy short-listed entries. They are stunning across the board, and I'm fortunate beyond fortunate to be a part of it.
Looks like I made the July 23 edition of Newsweek!
Here is a link to an article in Country Living that features all the shortlisted entries. Some remarkable photography!