• Selfie at Reesor Lake with Milky Way (Landscape)
  • Shooting Stars Workshop Pix1
  • Shooting Stars Workshop Pix2
  • Shooting Stars Workshop Pix3
  • Shooting Stars Workshop Pix8
  • Shooting Stars Workshop Pix9
  • Shooting Stars Workshop Pix11


From Field to Photoshop

In this 3- to 4.5-hour general workshop I review:

• Recommended cameras and astro-equipment needed to shoot the night sky

• The best practices for getting great images

• Then…the steps to processing images in Camera Raw and Photoshop

The emphasis is on wide-field nightscapes, time-lapses, and tracked images of deep-sky objects. I do not cover deep-sky imaging with telescopes and auto-guiders. (I have a workshop just on that!)

Nor does this workshop deal with lunar and planetary imaging, or the use of dedicated astronomical CCD/CMOS cameras or specialized software such as PixInsight.

This workshop is for beginners and for landscape photographers wanting to try their hand at nightscape shooting and basic tracked sky shots. 

COURSE CONTENT (Varies with the length of the workshop)

Part 1 – Choosing Gear

• Choosing a camera

• Full-frame vs. cropped frame

• DSLR vs. mirrorless

• Stock vs. modified

• Choosing lenses & accessories

• Automatic vs. manual lenses

• Zoom vs. primes

• Best focal lengths

• Hardware intervalometers

• Advanced camera control for time-lapses

• Planning software

• Choosing astro-gear — sky trackers

Part 2 – Best Practices in the Field

• Setting your camera

• Raw vs. JPG

• Setting exposure - Expose to the Right

• Using the histogram

• 500 Rule limits

• Reducing noise at the camera

• LENR and dark frames

• Other settings (white balance, picture styles, etc.)

• Settings for star trails

• Settings for time-lapses

• Settings for tracked deep-sky

• Shooting images for stacking

• Focusing the camera

• Using Live View

• Maximizing Live View brightness

• What can go wrong

Part 3 – Processing Images (as time allows) 

• Developing Raw images

• Raw developers vs. layer-based software

• Exporting as “smart objects”

• Developing star trail and time-lapse sets

• Exporting a set of images using Image Processor

• Assembling time-lapse movies

• Stacking star trails (Photoshop and StarStaX)

• Stacking in Photoshop for noise reduction

• Processing in Photoshop with layers

• Using adjustments layers

• Selection methods for masking

• Masking ground and sky

Each workshop participant receives a handout PDF (via a download) of all the presentation's slides and screen shots of image-processing steps. 

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