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Star Trails September

   Star trails are the simplest to capture with film and provide a great test of light pollution. As these images show, I have significant pollution to the south-east (above image was taken with the camera pointing north-east) and north-west (below, camera pointing WNW). The above was taken with Fuji Astia 100 (a slide film), the image below was captured with Fuji Superia 100 (a print film). Both were scanned with a Polaroid Sprintscan 35+ scanner, stretched in Photoshop, and finally smoothed with the Kodak GEM professional Photoshop plug-in. This relatively new plug-in is almost magical in its ability to reduce film noise and does very well with digital image noise as well. While not as potent as Photoshop's unsharp mask in sharpening, it does a good job without producing black rings around stars. Images captured with a Vivitar 28 mm f/2.8 lens at f/5.6 on a Nikon Nikkormat, with several hours exposure each on 2004-09-09.


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