Photographing the Milky Way on Film

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I often find myself drooling over news of the latest digital camera gear and lenses. I think we all do it a little. Astrophotography has benefitted greatly by the advancement of digital photographic technology and I’m always on the lookout for gear and techniques that will help increase the quality of my astrophotography. Most of all, astrophotography is more accessible than it has ever been because of newer, more affordable and more advanced technology.

I’ve made it a point to experiment with capturing the night sky on affordable and limited gear like point-and-shoot cameras and even a smartphone. I consistently support the idea that you don’t need the most expensive camera gear to learn how to photograph the night sky. That said, the point-and-shoot cameras and smartphone that I tested still use advanced modern technology to do what they can do. They have modern, back-illuminated CMOS sensor and the latest in miniaturization tech.

What if we instead approach astrophotography by going full retro?

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Photographing the Milky Way with a Smartphone and the Future of Photography

Photographing the Milky Way with a Smartphone: Is it possible? An article by Ian Norman

Some believe that smartphones will never replace “real” cameras like DSLRs or mirrorless cameras. This article is about providing evidence to the contrary. It’s about making some amazing images with limited equipment. I anticipate the day that our slim pocketable smartphones will be more powerful and capable cameras than the the top-of-the-line DSLRs and mirrorless cameras available today.

This is my account of shooting my first smartphone images of the Milky Way with nothing but my OnePlus One smartphone and a tripod.

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How to Find the Milky Way

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If you want to photograph the Milky Way, the first thing you’ll need to know is how to find it. In this article, I share some of my favorite tools and tips for finding the Milky Way’s galactic plane and more specifically, the bright galactic center. Using either smartphone apps or by memorizing important constellations, you’ll be able to find the Milky Way with or without the use of technology.

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