Capture the Stars at Alta - Sat, July 15th 2023

Sale price$99.00
7:00 p.m. – 11:00 p.m. (MST)
Alta, Utah
Location Update: Because of current snow and road conditions, and we will still be meeting in the Albion Basin Parking Lot, but we will be hiking from there to a NEW location and NOT carpooling up to the Cecret Lake Trailhead.

Join us for a photography workshop under the stars in the mountains of the Wasatch front. Alta in spring bloom will make for a beautiful foreground against the starry night sky. So sharpen your astrophotography skills, or come as a beginner. All levels are welcome during this four-hour session.

We will meet at the Albion Basin Parking lot before the toll booth. From there, we will carpool up to Cecret Lake Trailhead where we will hike up to our destination. During the workshop, we will make sure that everybody is clear on their camera settings, talk shop in the field, take questions, and explore helpful apps. The Milky Way core aligns very nicely with Devil’s Castle around 10:00p.m. We will have an hour to record a solid shot of the Milky Way before we depart. Every student's images will be reviewed. 

After the session, please be cautious and safe returning to the parking lot, since it is downhill on rocky and uneven terrain. Also, we will be staging at an altitude of 9,600’, so we recommend that you pack a lighter load – Astro gear only. 

Astrophotographer, Derek Sturman, will there to help instruct and make sure attendees are getting the best composite image. Click on the link to see examples of his work. 


Suggested gear to bring: 

  • Camera (capable of ISO 3200)
  • Wide Angle Lens (preferably with F2.8 aperture or faster)
  • Tripod 
  • Wireless Remote (Newer cameras can be controlled via apps)
  • Extra Batteries 
  • Warm Clothes 
  • Sturdy Shoes
  • Flashlight/Headlamp for Navigation (We will not be using artificial light in our images)

Proposed Timeline7:00 p.m. Leave Albion Basin Parking Lot on time.

  • 7:30 p.m. Arrive at shoot location.
  • 7:30-8:15 p.m. Scout for MW compositions with interesting foreground elements, (i.e., streams, wildflowers, etc.) Review composition, focus stacking, histogram, best practices for solid results.
  • 8:15-8:35 p.m. Shoot Blue hour. Rotate through any popular compositions. Ensure achieved critical focus (focus stacking), and review histograms for optimal exposure.
  • 8:35-9:00 p.m. Everyone sets up in a safe area with an unobstructed view of the sky. Students acquire a critical focus on the brightest star and deactivate AF. 
  • 9:00-9:45 p.m. Talk shop. Review PhotoPills, answer questions.
  • 9:45-11:00 p.m. Shoot MW galactic core (sky only shots) Concentrating on good exposure via a histogram, and pinpoint stars (explore star stacking for noise reduction and greater clarity).
  • Adjourn and return to vehicles. 

Get to Know Derek:

Derek Sturman photo

Derek began photographing landscapes in July of 2015 and started experimenting with long exposure while camping after picking up a DSLR camera that he originally purchased for video.

Derek is a landscape and astrolandscape photographer from Utah specializing in photographing the milky way over unique landscapes. Derek offers education through online tutorials from the basics to advanced post processing techniques and private photographic workshops.