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APOD: 2010 June 29 - Trees, Sky, Galactic Eye

Is beauty in the eye of this beholder? Earlier this month, over Réunion Island in the Indian Ocean, a playful photographer with an eye for the sky took eight images and composed the above intriguing picture. The full fisheye frame shows everything above the horizon, including a lamp-illuminated landscape around the edges, and the zenith of the sky directly overhead. The image, however, may be more than beautiful -- it may also be a scavenger hunt. Can you find the photographer's tent, the slope of a volcano (active Piton de la Fournaise), a picturesque shoreline, and the lights of the nearby town (Saint Philippe)? One remarkable feature of the above image is that its center contains the very center of our Milky Way Galaxy.
:eek:
 

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That is awesome. How the bloody hell did he manage to light up the landscape without washing out the sky?
 

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NICE BLACKMACHINE YO
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That is awesome. How the bloody hell did he manage to light up the landscape without washing out the sky?
I imagine it's a combination of careful metering with the lamp light, shutter time wizardry and maybe a bit of HDR?
 

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Canis lupis robertus
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I imagine it's a combination of careful metering with the lamp light, shutter time wizardry and maybe a bit of HDR?
Yeah, I'm thinking HDR. Usually even the cleverest manipulation of techniques are gonna have a hard time with contrast like that.
 

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El Kabong
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I don't know. If it was HDR, wouldn't the foreground be a lot less bright? The scene lighting won't affect the sky. The actual light was probably a lot dimmer than that in person, but exposing for the sky made the foreground really bright. The things on the ground that are out of the range of the lamp are still really dark. There's also the issue that shooting trees against the sky in HDR when different exposures are likely to be used for the trees than for the sky creates a few problems. Those problems might be less... problematic... for someone who is far more experienced than my amateur ass, though.
 

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Canis lupis robertus
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I don't know. If it was HDR, wouldn't the foreground be a lot less bright? The scene lighting won't affect the sky. The actual light was probably a lot dimmer than that in person, but exposing for the sky made the foreground really bright.
1. I'm no HDR expert, but I took a master class with a genius landscape and nature photographer, and he talked a bit about it. I think it would generally depend on the software settings, since you can really run the range with how your images are exposed in HDR.

2. The scene lighting can definitely affect the sky. Anything in the image is going to have an effect on the exposure levels of the other parts of the image. Hence, HDR. That said...

3. Your last point is possible. But I'm still thinking to get a sky that perfectly exposed, showing all the stars... the available light from a starlit sky is a fraction of anything you'd use to actually manually light a scene.

Those are just my suppositions, though.
 
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