Galactic neighborhood

Critique Style Requested: Initial Reaction

Please share your immediate response to the image before reading the photographer’s intent (obscured text below) or other comments. The photographer seeks a genuinely unbiased first impression.

Questions to guide your feedback

Does this make you feel small? Or does it fill you with wonder?

Other Information

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Image Description

My daughter challenged me to do a galaxy shot…. This is my first attempt at Astro photography…. Would love people’s reactions

Technical Details

ISO 3500
24mm @2.8
Bracketed stacked image from 10seconds up to 20 second exposure
Hit it with Topaz
Light room exposure adjustments

Specific Feedback

Feedback on the overall visual appeal of the image, including its color, lighting, cropping, and composition.

Critique Template

Use of the template is optional, but it can help spark ideas.

  • Vision and Purpose:
  • Conceptual:
  • Emotional Impact and Mood:
  • Composition:
  • Balance and Visual Weight:
  • Depth and Dimension:
  • Color:
  • Lighting:
  • Processing:
  • Technical:

A nice first attempt. I’m curious about the exposure bracketing – sounds like more than 2 shots? – were the shorter exposures for the buildings? For my taste, they could be subdued more. They give a nice sense of place but compete with the Milky Way, which is low in contrast and definition. There is also a halo around the trees which could be minimized. The color balance is on the cyan side. A more balanced setting can bring out a little more definition and color in the MW, even with some light pollution. The strong vignetting at the top balances the FG somewhat but could be minimized, for my taste.

In framing the MW, if the brightest area (the galactic center) is placed a little to the left in the frame, there are some very interesting dust lanes toward the right that can often be brought out.

From the height of the galactic center, it looks like you are at a reasonably southern latitude – south Florida, maybe? More northern latitudes, where there can be clear air and dark nights in the mountains, begin to push these interesting areas down into atmospheric thickness.

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