Venus at twilight by the reservoir


Sep 2, 2008
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#1

Venus at twilight by the reservoir by chucklestoself, on Flickr

This shot was taken at approximately 8pm just at twilight and lower pierce reservoir. I saw the bright planet and knew I wanted to take a photo of it. I chose the pavilion as a complimentary subject of the photo and moved around the reservoir until i had the pavilion against the sky (rather than the surrounding trees). Deciding the composition after that was easy, portrait - to include the planet and enough space for the pavilion and it's reflection to rest on.

The shot was taken with my friend's Canon 550D, EF-S 18-135mm, f4, 18mm, ISO-100, 30 seconds. It also had a CPL attached.

After post-processing I realised there were other white stars/planets/whatever that showed up but it was quite faint. No crop was done, but the picture was darkened a little to bring out the blue in the sky. I think it would've been possible to catch other stars in the photo as the sky space allowed for it.
Is there a technique to shoot the fainter stars but at twilight too? (Without overexposure but also capturing the twilight sky)
I also realised the CPL had made light distortions on the planet itself, with a greenish edge on the right and a redish edge on the left on Venus. Should the CPL even be attached on?

After this shot, I realised why Venus is called the evening star, it is absolutely beautiful and this photo just sums up the whole serenity of the park.

Just want to know a little critique and advice to improve the photo.
 

twoic

New Member
Jul 14, 2010
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#2
Very nice. I like how venus seems to be overlooking the serenity of the reservoir. :)
 

Sep 2, 2008
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#3
Thank you. I was quite surprised that most of my friends were drawn more to the pavilion than Venus because that was not exactly what I intended my focus to be.

I'm just also curious to know what are the other settings/filters I can use when taking sunset/twilight photos and obtaining a similar colour pallet.
 

Sep 2, 2008
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#6
@Snap for Passion: Thank you!

@Shawnkoh: Thank you! If you've read the description/clicked on the link, I went to lower pierce reservoir to shoot this. I went back on another day but I didn't manage to replicate the results (in terms of white balance as well as for the colour of the sky). I think it's quite a popular place to shoot the sunset because of the water and an unblocked view of the sunset and during this time of the year the sun happens to set just above the lowest part of the trees which makes it easy to compose.
 

enzeru21

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Apr 7, 2010
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#7
ya everytime i go jogging at evening 6 plus to 7 plus always wil have photog there one..

it was the first place i went to shoot, years ago when i first got my first camera...
 

daredevil123

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Staff member
Oct 25, 2005
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lil red dot
#8
Venus is not strong enough a point of interest to garner enough attention. In that respect, you have failed.

Picture wise, the sky is really nice. If you did a landscape orientation, it would look much much better.

Also, you can try exposure blending or pushing fill light in PP, to get bring out the darker foreground a bit more.
 

nitewalk

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May 31, 2010
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#9
The planet is so tiny, so for me, I tend to notice the reflection of the trees (?) and the hut more.
 

Sep 2, 2008
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#10
Thank you both daredevil123 and nitewalk for your comments!

daredevil123: yes i did realise that venus would be too small. just like any other celestrail objects would be without a telescope! i guess it was my fascination with venus that brought me to take this picture. it is afterall called the evening star for a reason (;. the friend i was shooting with took a landscape shot of the pavillion with the same settings. the shot did turn out great but in comparison to this photo, it didn't seem as nice!

nitewalk: haha! yes i guess the title is misleading ):. but there is nothing much i can do without a telescope:). i feel with venus though, the picture is given more of a balance.
 

Eworms

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Oct 11, 2009
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#12
i like it. That's the only thing i want to say.

(but i wrote "i like it." and it would to be deleted by the moderators)
 

Sep 2, 2008
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#13
thank you eworms and shaoken :).

daredevil123: i'm sorry i have to ask what is exposure blending or pushing fill light? these are techniques i'm not really familiar with or perhaps employed without knowing. haha but okay i shall google it soon (;
 

daredevil123

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Oct 25, 2005
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#14
thank you eworms and shaoken :).

daredevil123: i'm sorry i have to ask what is exposure blending or pushing fill light? these are techniques i'm not really familiar with or perhaps employed without knowing. haha but okay i shall google it soon (;
If you use lightroom, you can see a slider called fill light. Pushing that slider to the right will light up the dark areas of the frame.

Exposure blending means, taking several frames exposed to different parts of the frame. Then you line them up using different layers. Then you choose to show which layer for different parts of the frame. That is called blending.

Anyway, the location you shot has a lot of potential. This is the same view I shot last year.
 

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#15
Venus is not strong enough a point of interest to garner enough attention. In that respect, you have failed.

Picture wise, the sky is really nice. If you did a landscape orientation, it would look much much better.

Also, you can try exposure blending or pushing fill light in PP, to get bring out the darker foreground a bit more.
Hey daredevil,

was just wondering, would it work better if a Star filter is used, to garner more attention to Venus?
 

May 7, 2010
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#16
First of all I say very good shot with just the right colors. Next I think it is closer to 7:30 than 8 because usually the pavilion's light would have lit up by 8. Secondly, 30s shot means the planet and star movement would be quite noticeable when enlarged. You would need what I understand is a motorized equatorial mount to compensate for the movement. Post processing is possible but also very tedious. I am no expert and have tried neither of the two. Furthermore the mount solution would mean the landscape will shift and blur. Very tough problem but worth the challenge. Thank you for sharing the photo. Neat.
 

Shen siung

Senior Member
May 21, 2008
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#17
To be very critical, yes, the Venus could be too small to catch attention, a moon might be able to do that.

However, to me, the composition, the colour, and framing, are very good. Good job.

Probably, the Venus could become a bit distracting?
 

PannyMMM

New Member
Jan 27, 2010
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#18
a bit of an astronomy nerd myself... happened to stumble on your pics :):)

not suprising that Venus caught your eye that evening... the Evening Star in the West is at greatest elongation (farthest distance from the sun as seen from Earth) on 19 Aug 2010 and peaking in brightness at the moment

that is why Venus is shining so brightly in our skies these evenings... its actually a crescent catching the most light from the sun, from our viewpoint, that is!


If this piques your interest, try the following dates

Oct 24 19:04 If you can catch Venus in the early evening, Mercury will pass within 7 degrees of Venus and you can snap both next to each other in the sky along with your shot.



For more info, see

http://stargazing.suite101.com/article.cfm/the_bright_star_in_the_west
 

Sep 2, 2008
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#19
If you use lightroom, you can see a slider called fill light. Pushing that slider to the right will light up the dark areas of the frame.

Exposure blending means, taking several frames exposed to different parts of the frame. Then you line them up using different layers. Then you choose to show which layer for different parts of the frame. That is called blending.
Alright I shall try this when I get the time to look at the photo again. Isn't exposure blending kind of like HDR as you've described in this case? I've not tried but I've taken a series of exposure at this location (though I don't think they can be used because I think I've set the wrong setting ): ), but thanks for the advice!
Nice shot too! The sun is setting in a different location towards the right, so it kinda falls at the part where the trees are the lowest and at the water section. The sunsets were really nice.

First of all I say very good shot with just the right colors. Next I think it is closer to 7:30 than 8 because usually the pavilion's light would have lit up by 8. Secondly, 30s shot means the planet and star movement would be quite noticeable when enlarged. You would need what I understand is a motorized equatorial mount to compensate for the movement. Post processing is possible but also very tedious. I am no expert and have tried neither of the two. Furthermore the mount solution would mean the landscape will shift and blur. Very tough problem but worth the challenge. Thank you for sharing the photo. Neat.
I get what you mean! I've read about that before awhile back. There's another technique but instead we take a series of shorter exposure shots and they layer them together using a software or some what. And the computer will tilt each layer so that the starlight will add upon to get a better image!
Yes I noticed the startrail when I zoomed into the photo. Mars was actually too faint to be seen in the photo.
Oh I was not aware of the pavilion lights. But it was just after sunset, quite dark but the 30second exposure brought out the twilight. When I composed the shot I couldn't actually see the pavilion very clearly so I had to estimate the distances a bit.

To be very critical, yes, the Venus could be too small to catch attention, a moon might be able to do that.

However, to me, the composition, the colour, and framing, are very good. Good job.

Probably, the Venus could become a bit distracting?
Haha, I see what you mean when you say distracting. I prefer to see it balancing the photo that makes it stands out a little from the other similar photo :).

a bit of an astronomy nerd myself... happened to stumble on your pics :):)

not suprising that Venus caught your eye that evening... the Evening Star in the West is at greatest elongation (farthest distance from the sun as seen from Earth) on 19 Aug 2010 and peaking in brightness at the moment

that is why Venus is shining so brightly in our skies these evenings... its actually a crescent catching the most light from the sun, from our viewpoint, that is!


If this piques your interest, try the following dates

Oct 24 19:04 If you can catch Venus in the early evening, Mercury will pass within 7 degrees of Venus and you can snap both next to each other in the sky along with your shot.
Thank you! I'm starting to become an astro-nerd myself. Partly because of the modules I'm reading this semester. I don't normally even notice the stars/planets but I guess interest just sparked. I actually managed to see the half Venus last Friday during a stargazing session as well as Mars. It was quite awesome. Oh my class is organizing a stargazing on the 29th october evening, so perhaps it might still be there to view.

I was actually on flickr viewing other groups on Venus and astronomy, the other photos are a lot much different in the sense of the lack of clouds and also the landscape. It suddenly made my shot feel rather weak compared to theirs. But at least it stood out (with the clouds and all).

Thank you all, glad you like the picture :)
 

daredevil123

Moderator
Staff member
Oct 25, 2005
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lil red dot
#20
Alright I shall try this when I get the time to look at the photo again. Isn't exposure blending kind of like HDR as you've described in this case? I've not tried but I've taken a series of exposure at this location (though I don't think they can be used because I think I've set the wrong setting ): ), but thanks for the advice!
Nice shot too! The sun is setting in a different location towards the right, so it kinda falls at the part where the trees are the lowest and at the water section. The sunsets were really nice.
Actually in my shot, the bright thing behind the clouds is a full moon. And it was shot early in the morning.
 

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