Fuji X-T2 - Milky Way Photography

Dark Skies

I recently returned from a trip to Wales where I had the opportunity to visit Broad Haven Beach which is located within a designated Dark Sky area.

I wanted to capture the Milky Way above Church Rock and took my Fuji X-T2 and Fuji 16mm f1.4 lens to the beach around midnight on 24th May 2017

Fast Glass - Fuji 16mm f1.4

The Fuji 16mm f1.4 has a useful focal length which is wide enough to capture the elements of the scene. I used the excellent Photopills App to plan the shot and knew the position and elevation of the Milky way before the trip.

When taking photographs of the Milky Way it is important to keep the shutter speed as low as possible to avoid the stars blurring into trails. The 16mm f1.4 was fast enough to allow shutter speeds as low as 10-20 seconds at ISO 3200.

I edited the photographs in Lightroom where the 'Dehaze' feature is very useful to bring out the detail in the sky. In this case I used a Dehaze setting of around +45

Fuji X-T2 - Fuji 16mm f1.4 - (20 second exposure, ISO 3200, f1.4)
Milky Way over Church Rock - Broad Haven Beach, Wales

It can be a challenge to find focus in the dark. In the case of the Fuji 16mm f1.4 there is a focus scale which helps. It is usually also possible to focus on the moon or bright star or ask a friend to walk a distance away and shine a torch towards you.

Fuji X-T2 - Fuji 16mm f1.4 - (20 second exposure, ISO 3200, f1.4)
Milky Way and shooting Star over Church Rock - Broad Haven Beach, Wales

I forgot that the X-T2 features the ability to enhance the LCD and EVF to make composition in the dark that bit easier. (Disable 'Preview Picture Effect') so I had a bit of trial and error to get the composition. The Landscape Shot at the top of this page is the third shot of the evening. 

I swapped out the 16mm for the 10-24mm to get a wider view. I think the fact that this was later in the evening and the Milky Way has risen in the sky has helped the definition.

Fuji X-T2 - Fuji 10-24mm f4 - (40 second exposure, ISO 12800, f4)
Milky Way and shooting Star over Church Rock - Broad Haven Beach, Wales