Viewing entries tagged
Nature

Under the Stars

Under the Stars

Growing up here in the Lancaster County countryside I remember being able to see the stars as a kid. No particular night stands out to me, but we've always had a sky full of stars when the clouds cooperate. Now that I'm older I understand that not everyone gets to experience a starlit sky without a considerable amount of effort and planning. 

I always enjoying sharing my photos of the stars. I'm not the best night photographer, but it is a challenge I like to experiment with now and then. With some of the 360 gear and software that came my way this winter I'm very excited to have some fun experimenting as the nights become more tolerable. Long waits for long exposures is a lot of fun, but it's not my favorite thing to do on cold winter nights.

 

Back when I first got my Nikon D5100 I was very excited. Finally, oh finally, I had a camera that would be able to capture the stars. It was actually the first thing I tried to do with it. I had no idea what I needed to do, it was my first time operating a DSLR, and yet ... there they were. All three of them! By some twist of really dumb luck (or some say "natural intuitive ability")* I managed to capture a picture of three blurry stars in the sky. The next night in an attempt to recreate the same stupidity I meticulously returned all of the settings to where they were the night before, and for some reason I couldn't seem to capture a single star. Which kickstarted my efforts to actually learning how to use this fancy new camera.

I only really use the D5100 fro 360s these days. Below is a 360 I captured one night last summer. At the end of the lane the white fence surrounds a one room Amish/Mennonite schoolhouse. To the right of the lane you can see the silos of the neighboring farm silhouetted on the Horizon. My localized and modern take on Starry Night. As a salute to one of my favorite artists of course.

 

VR Brings YOU into the field with me ...

This year I have been spending a lot of time and energy on 360 photos and videos. I've been fascinated with the medium for a few years now. I think it's a very interesting way to  Below are a few recent experiments where the basic idea was to convert 360 photos into 360 videos with the intent to create more depth to the experience. It's about as close as you're going to get to the experience without me actually bringing you along for some stargazing. 

These experiments were both a lot of fun to capture, and I always seem to walk away with more inspiration for next time. For the best experience I would recommend finding a Google Cardboard or other VR headset to watch it on YouTube!! 

Martic Forge Viaduct

Martic Forge Viaduct

Yesterday afternoon I had the pleasure of visiting one of my favorite sections of the Enola Low Grade Trail. The massive Martic Forge Viduct is an old railroad trestle along the trail that has been renovated to carry trailhead over Pequea Creek.  

I had previously written about the Martic Forge Viaduct in my Backyard Tourist Column in Lancaster County Magazine, but I wanted get down there while there was some fall foliage left. For more info on the trail CLICK HERE to read the full column.

 

Here are a few shots from my visit ... 

View of the new deck and original trestle structure looking east.

Panoramic View of the Martic Forge Viaduct.

360 Street View on the Martic Forge Viaduct

 


 

4 Autumn Panos from Central Pennsylvania

4 Autumn Panos from Central Pennsylvania

We had some gorgeous weather this weekend and we took full advantage of it. We tried to cover a lot of ground, both physically and visually.  

 

As many of you know I love panoramic photos. They're not ideal in every situation, but sometimes it's just what this Dochter ordered to get the entire scene in one image.  I primarily shoot with the Sony a6000 which has a very handy pano mode. Put it in pano mode, press the shutter button, it starts snapping, and you turn the camera. It then stitches the pano (almost always perfectly). Love it!

 

Below are four panos I captured during our adventures this weekend. 

 

 

Sunrise 10-29-16 - The Sky was filled with vibrant colors in every direction.

Panoramic view towards the Northwest from the Overlook at the Susquehannock State Park.

Panoramic view towards the South/Southwest from the Overlook at the Susquehannock State Park.

Panoramic view of Mill Creek flowing next to the Mason Dixon Trail. Truly beautiful Autumn scenery in October.