I just got back from a camping/photo trip in the northern Maine woods with my good friend Garrett Evans, shooting the night sky from some new, unique locations. This is the Milky Way reflecting in Round Pond on the Allagash Wilderness Waterway with Mt. Katahdin in the distance. Even to the naked eye the reflection of the stars in the water was amazing! To the left is Chamberlain Bridge, to the right is Garrett shooting along the shore, and near the center is a 48% moon rising.
This image took a few days to blend and stitch as it’s really three panoramas blended together: I shot the sky at 17 seconds for sharp stars, the reflection at 30 seconds to make it a little brighter, and one minute exposures of everything else at a lower ISO after the moonrise for more foreground details, as well as separate frames of the moon and Garrett. I merged the exposures separately for each frame in Photoshop first with a combination of Raya Pro and luminosity masks, aligned everything with PTGui (including the two separate exposures of the moon and Garrett), and then blended everything together manually via masks in Photoshop. As a result there were a lot of layers and the .PSB file is about 12GB before flattening.
Camera settings: 14mm, f/2.8, ISO 6400, 17 seconds for the sky; ISO 6400, 30 seconds for the water; ISO 3200, 60 seconds after moonrise for shadow details; ISO 1600, 1/125 & 1/30 second for the moon and reflection.
Stitching data: 28 images merged into 2 rows of 6 columns and aligned with PTGui Pro. Blended with Photoshop.
Equipment used: Nikon D810, Nikon 14-24mm f/2.8, Promote Control, and Really Right Stuff TVC-34L tripod w/ leveling base & multi-row panning head. Edited with Lightroom. Long exposure noise reduction via PixelFixer. Planned with PhotoPills.
The United States is one of the most diverse countries on earth, jam packed full of amazing sights from St. Patrick's cathedral in New York to Mount Hollywood California.The Northeast region is where it all started. Thirteen British colonies fought the American Revolution from here and won their independence in the first successful colonial rebellion in history. Take a look at these rolling hills carpeted with foliage along the Hudson river here, north of New York City.The American south is known for its polite people and slow pace of life. Probably they move slowly because it's so hot. Southerners tend not to trust people from "up north" because they talk too fast. Here's a cemetery in Georgia where you can find graves of soldiers from the Civil War.The West Coast is sort of like another country that exists to make the east coast jealous. California is full of nothing but grizzly old miners digging for gold, a few gangster rappers, and then actors. That is to say, the West Coast functions as the imagination of the US, like a weird little brother who teases everybody then gets famous for making freaky art.The central part of the country is flat farmland all the way over to the Rocky Mountains. Up in the northwest corner you can find creative people in places like Portland and Seattle, along with awesome snowboarding and good beer. Text by Steve Smith.