Friday, February 22, 2013

A Note on My Camera

You will not see pictures of the aurora from me here.  (Not even after I get back and can upload pictures.)  For the perfectly good reason that "Damn, my camera is inadequate."

To take pictures of the aurora, you need to make 3 manual adjustments to your camera, only one of which I can actually adjust on my little point & shoot.  And that one is shutter speed.  You're going to want a good 30 seconds, to capture all that light.

The longest shutter speed on my camera is 8 seconds.

When you have a 30 second shutter speed, you need a good solid tripod to park your camera on, because you can't hold it perfectly still for any length of time.

My only tripod is a mini (maybe 4-inch) gorillapod.  

When we first waited out the field, Margret set up here tripod all nice and steady on the ground, like a normal person.  I parked my gorillapod on top of a nearby mound of snow (covering ... I have no idea).  Because nothing goes with a woefully inadequate camera better than a woefully inadequate tripod.  I wanted to take a picture of my little camera setup next to everyone else's camera setups, but, of course, my camera couldn't take a good enough picture of it.

I'll be leaving my camera at home for our next few nights of aurora viewing attempts.  The guides have cameras out there, and can even manage to take a picture  of you in front of the aurora.  If we do get more light activity (probably not likely until Sunday, but we'll give it a shot anyway), I'll ask the guide to snap one of me.  Otherwise, I'll just get copies of whatever Margret manages to take.

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