About Lonely Speck

On Photographing the Milky Way on Vimeo

Hello and welcome to Lonely Speck!

We are Ian Norman and Diana Southern, a married couple with a passion for photography and travel.

Ian Norman and Diana Southern

Lonely Speck is the home of our night photography and astrophotography adventures. It’s a project to help us learn as much as we can about photographing the Milky Way and sharing those experiences with others so that they can learn how to do it, too.

Here you will find our best efforts to impart our own knowledge of dark sky photography to you. We pride ourselves on the hundreds of images all of you have created and shared with us using the tutorials and articles on Lonely Speck. We hope that you will find as much satisfaction using the tools here as we have had creating them.

We hope that you will join our small community and share your experiences with us. Subscribe to our email list, share your images on our Flickr group, follow us on Facebook, and read about our travel adventures on our travel blog.

Check out our meet-ups and workshops page for more opportunities to connect with us!

Wishing you clear dark skies and happy photographing.

–Ian & Diana

57 Replies to “About Lonely Speck”

  1. Hi Norman,

    I’ve just been watching one of your videos again (for the 500th time)

    As it’s now 7 years old and with the advancements in camera and software technology would you shoot and process Orion differently.

    It would also be interested to here your thoughts on if you would use a tracker to shoot the images and your thoughts on the software plugin for photoshop StarXTerminator and would you use it for processing Orion.

    Thanks for all the great video tutorials and knowledge you give us.


  2. I’m wondering if there’s an advantage to using this during the day? I am new to taking photos but have learned that using manual focus can really improve the way a photo can speak to someone. What if I just used this to focus on a street lamp that had some reflection from the sun. Would the reflection have lines going through it like the stars do? If there was a phone number I could call that would obviously be more helpful.

  3. I ordered this product 2 years ago but I never ended up using it. I have now lost it but I may order another because I have really been having trouble focusing my lens to the stars lately. It feels unfortunate to print a beautiful photo large and then to notice how the stars were out of focus. I would also encourage others who are trying to improve their focusing abilities to get something like this. I however have never actually tried this product or any like it but I’m sure it helps.

  4. Does anyone know what kind of effect this filter has on the actual photo quality? I’m not sure that I prefer to have lines going through my stars in a photo. I wish I could reach out to some sort of helpline but instead I must resort to this. Any help would be very much appreciated. Thanks!

    1. Hello, Sam. The idea is to remove the filter from your camera once the lens is focused properly. I hope this helps! I know the frustrations with a company not having a helpline or even responding to emails. Good luck

  5. Good morning. This product works great with the proper filter holders. I am so glad that I ordered mine before the market went dry. They seem very difficult to find these days. It’s odd that I know this because why would I be searching for something that I already have? Anyway, thanks for the filter that assists in focusing stars!

    1. Hello, Matt
      I’m not sure why you’re looking for products that you already have but I feel there are more important comments that could be posted here. I’m glad you enjoy this product.

    2. Matt Finkley: Thank you for your comment as I was trying to find these filters and did not realize “the market went dry.” Very helpful for me, and I don’t know why Gabriel took the time to write his response. Much appreciated. Catherine Todd

  6. I mistakenly ordered the wrong size filter. My fault. When I received it, I emailed them and said this was my mistake and asked how to return it and get credit for the correct size filter. No response. I sent them a 2nd email and asked if they had time to review. They responded with they’ve been very busy and that the size I needed was out of stock but they would be happy to send me a blemished version. I emailed back agreeing to that. Never received an email saying it has been sent nor did I receive the correct filter. I’ve reached out via email twice more and received no response either time. So it’s been over a month since they said they would send me the filter. No filter and no email response. It’s a pity because this filter is highly recommended.

    If you are too busy to do send an email for your business; get out of the business

    1. Within hours of posting this review, Ian contacted me. He apologized profusely for the mistake and today I received the correct filter. THANK YOU IAN!

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