How To Achieve Warp Speed Star Zoom Photo Effect In Camera
Let me preface by saying I am no pioneer in the realm of astrophotography and this is certainly not an original concept. I saw a few really well done star zoom photos, like the ones by Aaron J. Groen and Michael Shainblum and was totally blown away. I love the almost Star Wars effect this technique provides. So let's get to it.
You must have a zoom lens to achieve this effect. If you are stumbling across this blog post it is likely you already have the necessary gear for astrophotography, and there isn't anything additional needed for this shot, unless you don't have a zoom lens. Also, your camera settings will be identical to what you typically use for star photos.
It is important to note that the stars will appear to zoom out from the lens center or center of the frame, so this could lead to some pretty interesting compositions that I am anxious to try. Go wild with this.
Once you have the desired composition, it is time to take the photo.
There are no hard and fast rules and you could even zoom for the entire exposure at a slower rate, etc. My particular arrangement worked well because I spent the first half of the exposure light-painting, and then started my zoom. I really wanted to avoid making a composite image later in Photoshop.
I hope you found this short tutorial helpful for this relatively simple technique. Have fun out there.
Are you interested in learning more about photographing the night sky? Click here for information about upcoming workshops.