Star Play

I’ve had these photos sitting on my hard drive for a while, but never got around to doing anything with them.  In August, we stayed up late with Kara & Remington to watch the Perseid Meteor Shower.  We set up our camera on a tripod to automatically snap a photo every 30 seconds, then sprawled out on the deck and tried not to fall asleep.

We saw quite a few meteorites, but did not capture any in the photos.  Instead, I took one of the pictures and decided to play around with the color a bit.

Night Photography Tips
This is straight out of the camera.  The warm colors in the sky are from nearby shopping centers and street lights.

Night Photography Tips
To give the photo a cooler, more celestial vibe, I removed some yellows and reds and was left with this purple-y hue.  Pretty!

Night Photography Tips
If you want a more realistic look, you can remove most of the color casts altogether.

Night Photography Tips
You can also go a little crazy..

Night Photography Tips
How very Alien!  Or Tommyknockers, perhaps?

Late last night, and the night before..

Tommyknockers, Tommyknockers knocking at the door..


Night Photography Tips
This one is shown with the reds and yellows very saturated, giving an apocalyptic look.

There are many ways to play around with the color in an image.  Color Balance, Curves, Hue/Saturation and Color Mixer are all features included in most editing programs that will allow you to tweak the colors in an image.  Whether you’re removing an unwanted color cast or you want to get a bit creative – the sky is, literally, the limit!


  1. Steph says

    What ISO and such did you use? I have tried unsuccessfully to take star photos multiple times, and they are always either blurry (not in an artsy-cool way either!) or show just one or two stars. I’ve read up on several blogs with astrophoto tips but can’t seem to take anything worth a dime!

    • Erin says

      We used ISO 1600, f/2.8 and a shutter speed of between 15 and 30 seconds.  A tripod and a remote trigger (so you don’t jostle the camera when you hit the shutter) are very helpful for keeping the stars in focus!

      • Steph says

        Thanks a bunch! I suspect some of the problem was my old tripod…it always felt rickety to me and the more I thought about it the more I decided it was some of the issue. I recently got a new tripod and it’s overdue for some night time testing so I’ll have to take your suggestions and apply them, see what I come up with!

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