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Fix a camera onto a sturdy tripod, load it with a high speed film, set the focus to infinity , set the shutter to "B", aim at the target area and press the shutter by the shutter release cable.

Camera setting of Stationary Photography Method




A standard lens is sufficient for most constellations. The aperture should be fully opened for best result. The surrounding scenery can also be captured with a wide angle lens.

Star Trail


Increasing the exposure will record trails of stars as the Earth spins. Try to shoot star trails of the northern sky, all stars appear to revolve around the Polaris. If the location is not dark enough, avoid exposing for too long or having the aperture fully opened.

Other Celestial Phenomena


Phenomena involving brighter celestial bodies (such as solar eclipses, lunar eclipses and Moon phases) can be recorded by stationary method with proper exposure time. If the camera has a multiple exposure function, expose once every 5 to 10 minutes to record the celestial movement or the whole process of a solar or lunar eclipse.

Since the starry heaven is rotating from East to West, exposure time has to be limited in order to obtain a point image. The limiting exposures are as follows:

Limiting Exposure (sec)
Focal Length (mm) General Sky Area Area within 30° of Celkestial Poles
28 25 50
35 20 40
50 15 30
85 8 16
100 7 14
135 5 10
200 4 8