19 February 2012

Cosmic Time-Lapse

If you are a keen watcher of the night sky you will not have failed to notice the delight of being able to see Venus and Jupiter shining brightly down on us from the South West. I discovered yesterday that the ISS (International Space Station) on its orbit will be visble to us. I have missed it so many times because of cloud cover so yesterday I was hoping that the rain would go. Not only was it going to be visble to us in UK but that it's trajectory would mean we would see it flying (seemingly) between Venus and Jupiter.

I have used what I captured to create this 25 second film. Make sure you are paying attention at approx 12 seconds and you will see ISS whizz up between the brightness of Venus and Jupiter.

There is no sound on this video

In case you miss it in the video - here is a still.
ISS just approaching Jupiter

Now that I have fixed the 300D and it has passed it's rigor tests I am back in the land of looking for ideas for capturing interesting time-lapse events. I thought this was an excellent and challenging idea. I got my act together and about an hour before the ISS was due to pass over I captured the stars out of the open lounge window. Worked wonderfully. Also tried out a few different settings with the camera to see if I could make improvements.

For the actual capture I decided to set up the camera in the window of the office. Three issues created a 'not as good as it could have been' result to this film - one: the street light opposite the house has cast an orangeness to the finished product; two: I shot through the window which is never a good idea; and three: the steam from the central heating boiler occasionally wafts across the scene slightly spoiling it.

On Reflection:
Every time I complete a time-lapse I learn so much - both with techniques to capture the images and also with the software in handling the images and producing the 'film'. Have to say I love every minute of it. Am going out again tonight as ISS is going to be visible once again around 6.45pm this time passing to the left of Venus and Jupiter. I am going to try an outdoor position (so no window and no steam) and away from orange street lights. Results will be blogged about later.

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