David Baldwin (Great Britain)
I think that all of us crave something beautiful and
transcendent in our lives, and for me night photography has
fulfilled this need. I was fortunate that as a boy I
coincidentally developed separate interests in photography
and astronomy. My interest in night photography came
about by accident, I started making star trail photographs
which included some terrestrial foregrounds. The
interaction of trees, buildings, hills and sky produced effects
which interested me in their own right. I gradually
changed my emphasis, away from pure astrophotography to landscapes
which happened to include stars. However,in terms
of technique, I feel that it has always been a big advantage
that the first textbooks I read on low light photography were
written by astronomers.
I live and work in the south of England which offers many
advantages for photography, not least a subtle and gentle
landscape. However, light pollution here is inescapable,
so however much I deplore the light from the cities I have
developed my own photographic strategies for making use of
it. This is the reason for the strong colours
in my pictures - these are the results of selecting different
film types according to the colour effects I want to
achieve and the type of light pollution I'm dealing with.
As a Photoshop trainer I suppose I could get similar results
from digital manipulation but I wouldn't be as proud
of my images.
"The stars are really as much a part of us as our beautiful rolling
countryside, our mountains, rivers, and cities. We take pictures of all
these, so why not takes pictures of the stars?"
From Skyshooting, Photography for Amateur Astronomers
by R. Newton Mayall & Margaraet W. Mayall