This page contains detailed, step by step, easy to understand photography tips and tutorials on Milky Way, Star Trails, Northern Lights, Night Sky Photography, along with detailed information on the camera equipment you’ll need to get started.
You can consider this a photography class or course in night sky photography. Learn every tip, tutorial and topic linked on this page and you’ll be a master of the night skies!
If you’d like to see the photos I’ve created using the exact skills taught below, reference my Under the Stars Photo Gallery.
Night Photography Tips & Tutorials
Tips On Learning the Following Material
Beginner Photographers: I would recommend that you start with step 1, then continue with step 2 and step 3 as provided below. Skipping steps my get you to a single answer faster, but won’t provide an in-depth understanding of the subject matter, in turn slowing you down long term.
First read through each tutorial, then replicate the actions with your camera or on your computer. This is the only way to learn! Reading is great, but DOING is the most important step.
Intermediate & Expert Photographers: I have and continue to analyze each step of my photographic process ( step by step workflow ) using the Pareto Principle ( 80/20 Rule ). In short I want to analyze and find the 20% of my positive actions that create 80% of my positive desired results.
Writing tutorials is the best way I’ve found to visualize each step of my photography workflow. In turn I can cut out the steps I don’t need ( bottom 80% ) and improve and re-analyze the steps that are providing great results ( top 20% ). This is the only way to improve on a constant basis.
You’ll find each tutorial, technique and workflow provided below to produce effective, efficient results, with the minimal amount of steps. This is the key to re-producing and improving your results on a continual basis.
Step 1: Preparation & Planning
The skill provided in this section can be applied to any of the Milky Way, Northern Lights, or Star Trails Photography Tutorials below:
- Night Photography Camera & Lens Recommendations
- Planning for Star, Milky Way & Night Sky Photography
Step 2: Camera & Shooting Techniques
I would recommend reading each of the following tutorials in order for the best understanding of night sky photography. Each teach different photography tips that will build your overall knowledge of the subject.
- Milky Way & Star Photography Tutorial
- Northern Lights Photography Tutorial
- Star Trails Photography Tutorial
Step 3: Post Processing – Lightroom & Photoshop Tutorials
Learn to edit your star, milky way and night sky photos using the following video tutorials.
- Simple, Effective Noise Reduction for Star, Milky Way & Night Photography
- Milky Way Photography – Photoshop Video Tutorials & Actions
- Milky Way & Night Photography – Lightroom Presets
- Northern Lights Photography – Lightroom & Photoshop Tutorials
- Star Trails Photography – Lightroom & Photoshop Tutorials
Free Start to Finish Photo Editing Videos
- Watch Me Edit a Moon & Night Sky Photo of Mount Fitz Roy – Patagonia
- Watch Me Edit a Star Trails Photo from Mount Rainier National Park – United States
- Watch Me Edit a Moon & Night Sky Photo of the Oregon Coast – United States
Step 4: Advanced Photography Tips & Tutorials
The following tutorials can be applied to any of the skills you learned above. They can also be used for landscape and travel photography.
After mastering everything in steps 1 – 3, these tutorials will take your photos to the next level.
eBook – Photograph the Night Sky
Your Definitive Guide to Star, Milky Way, Northern Lights, Star Trails, Moon & Night Sky Photography
After finishing the final draft of Photograph the Night Sky in December of 2014 I worked with a few hundred of my star photography students to ensure that everything about the book is clear, concise, and very easy to learn, no matter what your skill level.
Working hand in hand with my photography students ( Beginner – Advanced Skill Levels ) allowed me to pick their brains on anything that they thought needed to be added to the book, clarified, or discussed in more detail.
We completely tore this book apart, then built it back up to be the most in-depth, comprehensive, and easy to understand night photography resource that exists!
I’m not kidding when I say this! I can’t wait for you to read this book & decide for yourself!
Photograph the Night Sky includes detailed written tutorials on shooting the Stars, Milky Way, Northern Lights, Moon, Star Trails and Twilight. Also included are chapters on scouting, planning, weather, composition and much more!
Get the First 70 Pages for Free & Start Learning Today!
Ready to Learn More?
Visit my Photography Tips & Tutorial Library to view every tutorial contained on this website.