A 100 degree, wide field of view image of the amazing rock formation, the Monolith, with the Milky Way extending vertically on its right side. The single exposure was taken at 00:29 on 26/1/2015 facing south in Victoria’s beautiful Mount Buffalo National Park.
The 30-second exposure allows the foreground to be captured, which is gently illuminated by a setting small moon, very low in the west. An inversion layer in the atmosphere and the long red light provided by the setting moon produces the sky colours and gradient. The brightest stars of the Milky Way, level with the top of the Monolith are the pointers and they lead above to the Southern Cross (Crux) with the dark region of the coal sack in between. Above Crux the bright Eta Carinae nebulae can be picked out. In the landscape version a tiny shooting star can be seen near the top right of the image.
I always aim to balance the exposure and gentle processing to try to maintain the relative brightness of stars and their natural colours when possible rather than over saturating the Milky Way, which can look unnatural.
A single 30-sec exposure, ISO6400, F2.8.
Canon 6D. Nikon 14-24mm at 14mm. Standard tripod. Shutter release.
Adobe Lightroom 5. Topaz Denoise.