Thursday, 10 September 2009

Karl Johnston, Ft Smith, NWT won a prize in the Royal Observatory Greenwich’s Astronomy Photographer of the Year 2009

Karl Johnston, Ft Smith, NWT
won a prize in the Royal Observatory Greenwich's Astronomy Photographer of the Year 2009

Head on over to the astrophoto group to see more.

Category winners – Earth and Space

This hugely varied category was for photos that included landscape or people. Pictures also had to show an astronomical subject such as the stars, the Moon, or aurora. Tell us what you think about the winners in the Astronomy Photographer of the Year group on Flickr.

  • Earth and Space – highly-commended


    Bow of Orion by Karl Johnston (Canada)  

    A few words from the photographer: 'I always loved viewing the majestic aurora borealis, and I would always wonder why it would only be me out there watching them on the cold nights growing up in Fort Smith, NWT, Canada. Every night I would go for miles and miles to escape the light pollution, into the sub-arctic wilderness. Trudging through three-and-a-half-foot snow and -40°C weather or below to eventually stop, look up, and attempt to orchestrate the dance of the aurora borealis through my camera.'

    What's in the picture: The auroras or Northern and Southern Lights are caused by the interaction between the Earth's atmosphere and a stream of particles from the Sun known as the Solar Wind. The Earth's magnetic field funnels these particles down over the planet's poles, giving rise to 'glowing curtains' of coloured light which are best seen in the night sky.

    Equipment: Canon 50D DSLR camera; Tokina - 11–16-mm lens; ISO 800; 20-second exposure

    What competition judge Dan Holdsworth thought: 'Through careful composition which creates a rhythm and symmetry between the veils of movement in the aurora's light and the silhouetted shapes of the trees, the photograph 'Bow of Orion' beautifully expresses something of the strangely musical and trance-like quality within the nature of the auroral experience.'


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