The May Camelopardalids promises to be a once-in-a-lifetime cosmic display as thousands of shooting stars will be visible above the skies of Europe and North America and now you can take a photos of this remarkable phenomenon.
The cosmic fireworks will take place as the Earth passes through the tail of a comet. Experts predict 200 shooting stars could rain down per hour, from dusk until dawn. The shower will occur in the morning in Europe and very early in North America, on Saturday, May 24.
Here’s our quick guide to taking a perfect shot of these shooting stars:
- Always be prepared.
Make sure your camera’s fully charged and bring extra batteries too.
- Life through a lens.
A fast, wide-angle lens is your best bet , 21mm f/2.8 or faster will give you the best results.
- Keep the camera steady.
Shooting during the night means the shutter on the camera must be open for longer, for minutes as opposed during the day when it only needs to be open for a fraction of a second.
- Get outta town!
Flee the glare of the city lights. This will dramatically increase your chances of getting that perfect shot. In the relative darkness of a rural setting those shooting stars will really pop.
- Circluar effect
To get this circular effect, taking advantage of the rotation of the earth (see photo above), look for the “B” on your shutter control dial. Use that setting with an old fashioned bulb release to hold the shutter open as long as you like.
- Make do and mend
If you don’t have a tripod, improvise. Use a tree stump, a seat or even a pile of rocks.
- High ISO
Using a high ISO can work well for shorter exposures. If you want to take a shot of a meteor this longer exposure gives you a wider window of time which means the stars will track across your shot.
This could take a while. Meteors are unpredictable. It takes luck to get a good shot but hunker down, muffle up and look to the skies. This is your chance.
If you take any good shots send them along to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.