Our _Newsletter_

Our Newsletter

LSP Newsletter #52

© National Geographic


Welcome to LSP September Newsletter!

This month we will get you looking up. Our Tip & Assignment theme is Sky and everything else that comes with it: rainbows, rain, lightning storms. Clear skies, cloudy skies, starry skies. Make the most of your camera settings to capture the infinite possibilities of nature colour palettes and weather phenomena.

Check out the Astronomy Photographer of the Year Exhibition featured below to find even more Sky inspiration.

Submit your images to win a £200 discount voucher to attend any course or workshop at LSP, including Part Time, Full Time and Flexible Professional Photography Courses.

Wesley Deprez


Wesley Deprez, Sophie Tomlin and Alicja Zalewska

We had an overwhelming number of entries for August’s Assignment #51 Travel Photography and not only that, there are incredible images there, so we decided to award three prizes this month: one big winner and two runners-up.

Congratulations to Wesley Deprez, Sophie Tomlin and Alicja Zalewska. Your images really made us travel with you.

Technical information:
Winner – prize £200 voucher: The Man from Ursi (Wesley Deprez): ISO: 2200, Aperture: f 2.9, Shutter speed: 1/60s, Focal length: 55mm, Camera Model: NIKON D810
Runner up – prize £100 Voucher: Polar Bear (Sophie Tomlin) ISO: 100, Shutter speed: 1/160s, Focal length: 300mm, Camera Model: NIKON D3300
Runner up – prize £100 Voucher: On my way to camp in Sahara (Alicja Zalewska) ISO: 100, Aperture: f 4.5, Shutter speed: 1/80s, Focal length: 18mm, Camera Model: Canon EOS 7D

Send your images to this month’s assignment published below to win a £200 discount voucher to attend any Workshop at LSP.




Blue, clear skies usually mean happiness and it is not different in photography, but if you are after a little (or a lot of) drama, set up the kit when clouds start to form. Storms, lightning and rain make remarkable photographs that often leave us breathless and contemplating the greatness of Nature.

There is so much to see up there: stars, clouds, sun, moon, rainbows. All of it can become a subject for your sky photograph. Make the most of the ever changing colours that tint the sky during dusk and dawn. Try different white balance settings to better capture the “feel” of the moment.

Talking about composition, use the rule of thirds to place the horizon line on the lower third as this gives emphasis to the sky. As a general rule, use medium to small apertures (high f/number) to have deep depth of field, but beware of your shutter speed in case it gets to slow resulting in camera shake.

A tripod or gorillapod always comes handy but nowadays you can also increase the ISO on digital cameras without having too much noise (grain).

Here are a few tips for different subjects, all found in the immensity of the sky.

Rainbows: Underexpose one or two stops to deepen the colour tones. Set focus to Manual and focus manually on infinite. On default focus settings, your camera will try to focus elements in the foreground.

Clouds: try to use a polarising filter in the front of the lens to increase the contrast between clouds and sky and saturate the colours, especially blue.

Sun: avoid looking directly at the sun through the viewfinder, experiment with silhouettes and bracket exposures (over and underexpose) to check if any result is best. Try HDR if your camera has this setting.

Moon: Forget the light meter. This is the only time you will see me giving you a formula: ISO 100, aperture between f/5.6 – f/8 and a shutter speed between 1/125 – 1/500 sec. It will work! Use the longest telephoto you in your kit. It may sound strange using such fast speeds at night with low ISO and small aperture, but the moon is actually a very bright object as it directly reflects the sunlight.

Lightning: set the camera on a tripod and use long exposures or BULB mode combined with medium to small apertures (high f/number) and low ISO. You will need a shutter release cable or remote to avoid camera shake. On bulb, open the shutter and wait for a few lightnings to happen before closing it and repeating with another frame, many times. Increase or decrease the exposure time depending on how you see the results. more time for dark pictures, less time for bright ones.

Star Trail: very much the same as lightning with MUCH LONGER exposures of at least 30 minutes to many hours. Only possible with BULB setting using a cable release, tripod (or a place you can leave the camera steady) and a bit of luck. Include elements in the foreground to add interest. use flashguns or even torches to light these foreground interests while the shutter is open. To avoid light pollution, shoot far away from cities.

We prepared a Pinterest board to get you inspired. Send us your images to win a £200 discount voucher to book any Course or Workshop at LSP.

Please submit your photos here (maximum 5 images per person). Login or register to be able to upload. Deadline: October 10th.

Click here to see all LSP Newsletters



See this year’s awesome winning photographs in the free exhibition at the Royal Observatory from 17 September.

Follow the Awards Ceremony live tonight with @ROGAstronomers #astrophoto2016 and be the first to see the incredible winning photos.

The pictures capture all manner of celestial spectacles: moons, stars, planets, galaxies, nebulae and some of the great astronomical events of the last year. There are prizes in eight different themed categories.

Insight Astronomy Photographer of the Year 2016
Date and time: From 17 September | 10.00-17.00
Location: Royal Observatory, Royal Observatory,
Planetarium & Astronomy Centre, Astronomy galleries