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Shooting The Milky Way


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#1 Youssef Abdelmohsen

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Posted 08 January 2012 - 04:46 PM

Hey guys I wanted to get some criticism, my small fan base on youtube is always giving me really lovely compliments, and I love it. However, I want serious criticism. I went out to film the Milky Way this month. I went to the middle of the desert. I live in Egypt. I am 16 years old. Here is my film : bit.ly/zThviF
I regularly make these montages. However this is the most focused one I've done.
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#2 Daniel Molina

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Posted 09 January 2012 - 06:57 AM

I've loved it despite of is a "simple" montage but I loved the colors. How did you edit it? Which program? Which equipment did you use? Lens? Filters? Mattebox+FF?

Tell us more, please!
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#3 Youssef Abdelmohsen

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Posted 09 January 2012 - 02:18 PM

I've loved it despite of is a "simple" montage but I loved the colors. How did you edit it? Which program? Which equipment did you use? Lens? Filters? Mattebox+FF?

Tell us more, please!

Thank you so much! I edited this in Adobe After Effects and Premiere Pro. I used a Nikon D5000 and a Sigma 18 - 200 mm ( I know Canon are better at video but I couldn't afford a 5D mkII or 550D at that time)and my really standard Targus tripod. That's all the equipment I had + a charger.
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#4 Damien Andre

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Posted 10 January 2012 - 02:45 PM

were those timelapse moves done in post then? i think its really good, but the timelapses have an odd motion or cadence to them. i mightve used a longer exposure, it couldve just been some export setting tho.
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#5 Youssef Abdelmohsen

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Posted 10 January 2012 - 06:28 PM

were those timelapse moves done in post then? i think its really good, but the timelapses have an odd motion or cadence to them. i mightve used a longer exposure, it couldve just been some export setting tho.

Yep timelapses motion was done in post. Which timelpase are you talking about?
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#6 Damien Andre

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Posted 11 January 2012 - 03:03 PM

Yep timelapses motion was done in post. Which timelpase are you talking about?

all of them, what i think looks off the actual animation. it looks a little stuttery.
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#7 Youssef Abdelmohsen

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Posted 12 January 2012 - 09:42 AM

all of them, what i think looks off the actual animation. it looks a little stuttery.

I agree. There was a lot of wind at that time and I didn't have a windbreak or a even a good tripod.
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#8 Markshaw

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Posted 13 January 2012 - 07:33 AM

Where is the link?
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#9 Youssef Abdelmohsen

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Posted 13 January 2012 - 05:36 PM

Where is the link?

Here it is : bit.ly/zThviF
It is a shortened link, just type that into your address bar and hit enter.
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#10 Milo Saarinen

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Posted 13 January 2012 - 06:18 PM

Criticism? I love to give criticism to anyone who doesn't get offended, heh. In some day shots the composition needed a little bit fine tuning: you show too much sky, tilt the camera just few degrees down, then it would have been more harmonious. Astrophotography is really hard subject to shoot especially the Milky Way, which glows very dim light. You need really fast lens, a digital camera that has a modified IR filter and a desert to shoot it (which you have). How long was your exposure for the stars? I liked the shot where the stars move above the tents and the car. You got quite a good results with your camera, and for a 16 year old that is really, really well shot video.
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#11 Youssef Abdelmohsen

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Posted 14 January 2012 - 05:15 AM

Criticism? I love to give criticism to anyone who doesn't get offended, heh. In some day shots the composition needed a little bit fine tuning: you show too much sky, tilt the camera just few degrees down, then it would have been more harmonious. Astrophotography is really hard subject to shoot especially the Milky Way, which glows very dim light. You need really fast lens, a digital camera that has a modified IR filter and a desert to shoot it (which you have). How long was your exposure for the stars? I liked the shot where the stars move above the tents and the car. You got quite a good results with your camera, and for a 16 year old that is really, really well shot video.

It's okay haha I don't get offended by it. Yeah I agree with the day shots not being as interesting too. I didn't take the time to focus on crafting my composition on day shots because I was mainly there to shoot the stars and didn't focus on day. It was a challenge to shoot the Milky Way, yes, I've seen some shots that are much much brighter than mine, and I want to achieve a look like that, but in order to do that, I have to travel 2 days into the desert to the corner of Egypt. Whereas here, I traveled 5 hours. I do need a fast lens, and I wanted a fisheye one for this project, but those are really expensive and I haven't found a store that I can rent lenses from. I know a modified IR filter would help a lot but I think you can get a good shot without it being modified, again, by travelling 2 days to the corner of Egypt. My exposure for the stars was 15 seconds, I know it's too low but at that time after I took a 20 second one, there was some motion blur, and I didn't want that at all. So instead I bumped my ISO up to 3200 and my exposure at 15 seconds with 15 second interval time in between, which ended up being 30 seconds total. I loved that shot too! That was my favorite shot out of the entire video. Thank you so much! really appreciate it!
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#12 Adrian Samuals

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Posted 20 January 2012 - 07:18 AM

Great video, especially the sunrise/ sunset/ night shots. Very atmospheric.
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#13 Lionel Pina

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Posted 20 January 2012 - 04:59 PM

Liked it alot. Especially the sunset and stars.

Edited by Lionel Pina, 20 January 2012 - 05:00 PM.

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#14 Bill DiPietra

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Posted 20 January 2012 - 05:24 PM

Wow. Really liked that. I especially liked the color saturation in the shot with the tents. Nice shadows.

Very well done! Stay at it!
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#15 Youssef Abdelmohsen

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Posted 21 January 2012 - 11:03 AM

Great video, especially the sunrise/ sunset/ night shots. Very atmospheric.



Liked it alot. Especially the sunset and stars.



Wow. Really liked that. I especially liked the color saturation in the shot with the tents. Nice shadows.

Very well done! Stay at it!

Thank you so much! I liked the shot with the tents too
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#16 Marcus Joseph

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Posted 23 January 2012 - 11:07 PM

It was a nice attempt, I liked your footage of the day mixed in. Here's some milkyway stuff I've shot which I'm not even all that happy about.



There's two distinct shots at the end were you can clearly see the milkyway though and I think that's what you're kind of after.

I was shooting on a 10-22mm Canon lens that I borrowed from someone at f/3.5, 30 seconds exposure, around 1250 ISO I think. But even with all those exposure settings it's still not enough. I will be going back to the same place to shoot more and try to dig a little deeper into the shadows, but it's very tricky cause you get a lot of noise, specifically with a 7D. If I can make enough money, I plan to get a 1Dx, shoot at a comfortable 6000 ISO, 30 seconds +, get a 24mm lens and shoot at f/1.8 or even wider. ATM I can't shoot with 24mm because it's not wide enough on a crop sensor, but those are the kind of settings that will get you very wonderful results.

Another tip is to try to keep your intervals under about 5 seconds, otherwise you don't get flowing motion.

Edited by Marcus Joseph, 23 January 2012 - 11:07 PM.

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#17 Youssef Abdelmohsen

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Posted 24 January 2012 - 07:44 AM

It was a nice attempt, I liked your footage of the day mixed in. Here's some milkyway stuff I've shot which I'm not even all that happy about.



There's two distinct shots at the end were you can clearly see the milkyway though and I think that's what you're kind of after.

I was shooting on a 10-22mm Canon lens that I borrowed from someone at f/3.5, 30 seconds exposure, around 1250 ISO I think. But even with all those exposure settings it's still not enough. I will be going back to the same place to shoot more and try to dig a little deeper into the shadows, but it's very tricky cause you get a lot of noise, specifically with a 7D. If I can make enough money, I plan to get a 1Dx, shoot at a comfortable 6000 ISO, 30 seconds +, get a 24mm lens and shoot at f/1.8 or even wider. ATM I can't shoot with 24mm because it's not wide enough on a crop sensor, but those are the kind of settings that will get you very wonderful results.

Another tip is to try to keep your intervals under about 5 seconds, otherwise you don't get flowing motion.

Wow you got very beautiful results! Yes that is what I was going for but unfortunately I couldn't go much further to see it. I wish I had a Canon 5D mkII that would certainly be enough for me, I could push up the highlights in post later if I'm at a low ISO. I loved the 2 shots at the end like you said, and the day shots were amazing! I also really like the music you put on there. Do you know the specific name of the song by bignic? and do you know their copyright ? Because if it is creative commons license I could use it all the time on Youtube.
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#18 Brian Hulnick

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Posted 30 January 2012 - 02:38 AM

It was a nice attempt, I liked your footage of the day mixed in. Here's some milkyway stuff I've shot which I'm not even all that happy about.



There's two distinct shots at the end were you can clearly see the milkyway though and I think that's what you're kind of after.

I was shooting on a 10-22mm Canon lens that I borrowed from someone at f/3.5, 30 seconds exposure, around 1250 ISO I think. But even with all those exposure settings it's still not enough. I will be going back to the same place to shoot more and try to dig a little deeper into the shadows, but it's very tricky cause you get a lot of noise, specifically with a 7D. If I can make enough money, I plan to get a 1Dx, shoot at a comfortable 6000 ISO, 30 seconds +, get a 24mm lens and shoot at f/1.8 or even wider. ATM I can't shoot with 24mm because it's not wide enough on a crop sensor, but those are the kind of settings that will get you very wonderful results.

Another tip is to try to keep your intervals under about 5 seconds, otherwise you don't get flowing motion.



A very nice video. Maybe a little more mellow music would be better.
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#19 Adrian Samuals

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Posted 09 February 2012 - 08:21 AM

Shooting video of the night sky is very hard to do successfully. I tried to film the meteor showers in Nebraska a few years ago and it was virtually impossible, even with the amount of meteors whizzing around.
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#20 Brian Hulnick

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Posted 17 February 2012 - 08:41 AM

I once had the privilege of viewing the Milky Way through a professional telescope (thank you Sir Patrick Moore) and was immediately floored by the sheer beauty of its gas formations. So many colors.
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