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A New England photographer captured an astronomically wondrous image of a meteor shooting through the sky with a Milky Way backdrop.
Anyone who’s been on a plane has done it, you whip out your phone at the wing-side window and take a photo soaring above the clouds. It’s part-and-parcel of going on holiday.
However, not everyone captures the sky aboard an aircraft with the same majesty as Eric Wagner – an amateur photographer ‘specialising in wildlife, astrophotography and landscapes’.
While flying from Singapore to Australia back in September last year, Eric did his best to get a seat facing the Milky Way in a bid to capture the photo he’d been chasing for a while. ‘Sometimes it works sometimes it doesn’t. I recently flew and the entire time we chased sunset and it was never dark enough to capture the Milky Way,’ he wrote on Instagram.
However, this time was different. Equipped with his Canon 5D4, he set up his tripod and started shooting. In a single 10-second exposure image, he managed to bag the shot of a lifetime, capturing not only the Milky Way but also a bolide meteor (even confirmed by NASA).
‘I was treated to a magnificent sight though as I shot. I’ll let the photo speak for itself. The stars could have been a little sharper as there was slightly bouncing during the shot but overall I just love the shot,’ he wrote.
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It’s basically 3 months to the day since I took this shot. 99% of people are complementary and love it. Then we have the 1% (or probably less) who think it’s faked or photoshopped or don’t understand how I could shoot 10 seconds without getting trailing stars from a plane. So here is the shot of the back of the camera. Yes it’s a single image Yes it’s not photoshopped Yes it’s really 10 seconds Yes It was on a tripod as I was in business class of an a380 Yes a380s have 2 windows so the frame in the shot is the outer window Yes you can shoot 10 second shots from a plane. The forward movement doesn’t impact star trails but turbulence and up and down movement does (I’ve had much better luck at 10 seconds with a 14mm than a 24mm) Yes it is a meteor not a satellite. NASA confirmed it was a bolide meteor.
Upon uploading the incredible snap, some sceptics aired their Photoshop accusations – but Eric is rightly steadfast.
In a separate post, he wrote: ‘We have the 1% (or probably less) who think it’s faked or Photoshopped or don’t understand how I could shoot 10 seconds without getting trailing stars from a plane… the forward movement doesn’t impact star trails but turbulence and up and down movement does.’
Whenever I book my next flight, I’ll have one request only: a seat facing the Milky Way.
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