Saturday, September 8, 2012

Nightscapes on a Budget

NightScapes by my definition are "starry night skies that include a landscape feature."

"Milky Way over Jackson Lake and Teton Range" in Grand Teton N.P. ~ © Royce Bair
Many photographers look at my NightScapes, like this photo of the Milky Way over Jackson Lake and the Teton Range, and say, "These are awesome photos, but I don't have the equipment to produce this kind of work." That's somewhat true, because starry night skies are about 130 times darker than even a sky lit with a quarter moon!

For the very best nightscape work, expensive, full-frame sensor DSLR cameras such as the Nikon D3, D4, or the Canon 5D Mark III (like I have) are helpful in producing low-noise images of star-filled skies (as points of light) with nighttime landscapes. However, good nightscapes can still be taken with almost any DSLR or point-and-shoot camera that is capable of an ISO setting of 1600 and above. Here are some examples (click on the image to see the full gallery):

The purpose of this gallery is to show that one doesn't have to have the latest and greatest equipment in order to get good Nightscapes. These photographers have spent 1/2 to 1/5 the money and have much to show for their smaller investment. Camera, lens, and exposure information are provided with each image. ENJOY! Now, go out and start taking your own nightscapes --they've proved it can be on done on a budget!


  1. It's exciting to see what can be done on a budget. Thanks for highlighting this!