Star-gazing is a luxury for Mumbaikars like us with so much light pollution around. It becomes difficult to even spot the brightest of the stars in Mumbai. But, that’s not the case on the outskirts of Mumbai. Asangaon, which is about 70 kms from Mumbai is one such quiet place where you can actually enjoy star-gazing.
Being interested in celestial objects and avid photographer, I love to play around with my camera. This time, I decided to try my hand at astrophotography. In the photograph, my nephew Sanket is holding the torch pointing at the Little Dipper or Ursa Minor constellation. I shot this with a normal camera and not the one meant for Astrophotography. There are special cameras with higher bulb settings and good sensitivity image sensors for astrophotography. But there are many tricks for taking photographs of celestial objects with normal camera as well. Using camera tripod stand, highest bulb settings you can keep the camera steady and increase duration of exposure. Then, you have to focus manually on a sufficiently farther object (a faraway tree) to trick camera that you are focusing at infinity – lock the focus point and then shoot.
We had a lot of fun toying with astrophotography and everyone interested should try it out. For the star-gazing enthusiasts in Mumbai, I would suggest visiting www.khagolmandal.com and signing up for one of their night-out sessions.