Star Trails Over the Pier
Sometimes you just get lucky. I went out to Holland Beach well after dark a couple of weeks ago intending on getting some Milky Way pics.
While I was there I thought I would experiment a bit. I wanted to try a long exposure of just the breakwater light and see what I would get.
Let me set the scene. There was no moon, so it was very dark on the beach. Other than the lights from far off beach houses, the only light was from the lighthouse (Big Red) and the breakwater lights. Honestly, I could see only about two steps in front of me and that was it. There was also a pretty stiff breeze.
I carefully made my way over near the water's edge, not too close though, I didn't want to get wet. I set up my tripod and camera and aimed it toward the blinking green of the north breakwater light.
I could see stars above fading away on the horizon, giving way to some light clouds being lit up by what I assume were city lights in Wisconsin across Lake Michigan. For the most part, what I was aiming at was darkness. At least that was all I could see in the viewfinder or LCD on the back of my camera. At most I saw a green blinking light.
I did take a quick super high iso shot just to see what was in the composition. I adjusted my aim and leveled the camera a bit, took another quick shot and decided I was ready for the long exposure.
I set my iso at 100 and my aperture as wide open as it would go. Then I clicked the shutter remote and my 5-minute timer at the same time. Because of the wind, I huddled around my camera trying to block the wind from shaking my camera. It made for kind of a long 5 minutes. :)
When the timer went off and the shutter was closed, I looked at the image on the back of my camera and was pleasantly surprised at what I saw.
Star trails, golden clouds, and the breakwater light reflecting off of the lake. I feel like I got a little lucky on this one.