JIM HENDERSON PHOTOGRAPHY
Aberdeenshire Professional Photographer, Royal Deeside, with Photo Library of Aberdeenshire & Scotland, Scottish Aurora Borealis displays.
AURORA GALLERIES Click on the photo to enter the Gallery. The thumbnail images in the galleries can be enlarged by one left click on them. These galleries contain photographs of Aurora displays taken over North East Scotland and illustrate the wide variety of shapes, colours and forms that this night time event periodically offers. They are part of one of the largest collections of Scottish Aurora recorded in the United Kingdom. My photographs of the Aurora are available for reproduction sale on Crooktree.com and Picfair, key in my name and Aurora to see further examples of this beautiful night sky event. Most of my best photography is now being placed on Crooktree.com at the expense of this Website and by keying in my name with other themes e.g. sunsets, Scotland, Aberdeenshire, snow, Egypt, etc. you will find over 3000 other examples of my work as of August 2010; this collection will expand over future months. A detailed write up about my experiences photographing the Aurora is on Crooktree.com on the Links page. Some of my photographs are also for purchase on Collections. Prints or Canvases of several Aurora images can be obtained locally in Banchory from Linda at Reprografix. For Aurora watchers please note that even to 2017 the current activity in the UK is low as we are in the so-called Solar Minimum when the sunspot activity has been particularly low but we did have a small visible display in March 2017. Some Aurora displays can be caused by being in the solar wind or from random Coronal Mass Ejections (CME) and to get some idea of when these might give us displays over the UK I suggest watching three useful sites: Spaceweather.com , AuroraWatch UK and Auroraspy.co.uk. Currently in 2017 we have had one of the most disappointing Solar Maximum's over the past decade and are now moving into another Minimum Cycle so expectations are low. There are regular Aurora displays in the Northern and Southern Hemisphere's as illustrated daily on the Spaceweather Aurora Photo Gallery but most of these are Solar Wind generated without the power levels to push big displays as far south as Scotland. Cloud is also a problem with more westerly Low's off the Atlantic and it stopped several sightings of this summer's NLC. For those interested in photographing Aurora, I used a DSLR Fuji S3 from 2003 and upgraded to a S5Pro before settling on the Nikon D700 FX and these are all set on manual with wide open aperture at an ISO of 1600. Set the manual setting so that the lens can be manually focussed to infinity (auto focusing will not work as too dark) and you can also do time exposures using a cable release and a tripod. I find exposure times of around 20 seconds with a wide angle lens with a maximum lens aperture of f2.8 about ideal but experiment as well with different settings. I have found the automatic exposure tends to underexpose and that noise is a problem. On a manual film based system, use 400asa film, push develop the film 2 stops and use the same lens aperture/exposure times as a bench mark. No filters needed. Colours will be saturated compared to your human eye perceptions of the actual aurora. With many modern digital cameras and the latest DSLR cameras, ISO speeds of in excess of 1600ISO are available so exposure times, using the above camera parameters, can be reduced considerably. I now take displays with an ISO3200/6400 on my Nikon D700 FX, exposing for 7-10 secs. with excellent results. The image quality e.g. noise/grain factor was almost non-existent compared to the scans of Fuji slide film and the Fuji DSLR at 1600ISO. Location could be anywhere in the UK. Of course the further north the better but they are seen regularly in many parts of England, especially the large corona displays. Northern night sky, free of clouds, after full darkness and away from close high hill lines and light pollution are the best viewing scenario. In the autumn The Plough is a good reference point and in the spring Cassiopeia. They are not temperature dependant but of course frosty nights are usually clear so watch for batteries getting flat more quickly. All photographs are the Copyright of Jim Henderson Photography and cannot be used for commercial use without prior agreement . I am delighted if they are used for limited personal use.
Telephone/Fax: 44 01339 882149
Email : JHende7868@aol.com
Address: Crooktree, Kincardine O'Neil, Aboyne, Aberdeenshire, Scotland, UK AB34 4JD
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