A Photographer’s Guide to Capturing the Northern Lights During the Solar Maximum


Start by setting the aperture to the widest position, and adjust your shutter speed to how bright the lights are. Longer shutter speeds of 30 seconds allow the stars to shine through, and you can lower the ISO for less noise interference.

The brightness of the aurora can easily wash out the stars. “The only way to capture the stars alongside aurora borealis is when they are apart from each other,” Aryanto says. “The best way to do that is by taking a panorama photo.”

After the camera itself, the lens is what matters most. Carnevale suggests a Canon L Series like the EF 14mm f/2.8L II USM, or the AF-S NIKKOR 14-24mm f/2.8G ED if you have a Nikon. More affordable lenses like the Tamron SP 17-50mm f/2.8 will also work.

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