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A night under the stars with the Sigma 20mm f/1.4 ART lens

A night under the stars with the Sigma 20mm f/1.4 ART lens

I’ve been impressed with the Sigma 20mm f/1.4 ART lens so far (see my sigma 20mm first impressions here) and decided to try some astrophotography with it. Unfortunately it’s been cloudy and or raining here for the last couple of weeks and it’s now nearly a full moon ruling out any deep space or milky way pictures for another 2 weeks until the new moon. However it’s been a while since i’d done star trails and also done some fun wire-wool spinning so I thought I’d give it a whirl (haha and a whisk).

So me and a collegue Robert Whetton headed off to darkest wimborne to find a deserted church ruins that I know would work well for this sort of photography. Coupled with what I knew of the Sigma 20mm ART lens and it’s awesomeness wide open I thought that this would let me shoot at a much lower ISO than i would with any other lenses. This fast aperture meant I could shoot at ISO100 and ISO200 instead of higher giving my images much lower noise! This is superb news for winter weddings and low light portraits. Good job Sigma!

One thing to note when taking night shots at this time of year with frosts is you need to watch the big front element for condensation, this can cause some flaring in your pictures, so I had to keep wiping the front element with a cloth. Worth bearing in mind if you’re shooting at 1am in a cold field in the middle of the country 🙂

Here’s some of the pictures we came away with!

All pictures shot with the amazing Sony A7S and sigma 20mm f/1.4 ART lens via photodiox adapter at f/1.4 and f/2

Knowlton Church and Sigma 20mm f/1.4 together for star trails

Knowlton Church and Sigma 20mm f/1.4 together for star trails

Knowlton Church and Sigma 20mm f/1.4 together

Knowlton Church and Sigma 20mm f/1.4 together

Knowlton Church and Sigma 20mm f/1.4 together with wire wool spinning

Knowlton Church and Sigma 20mm f/1.4 together with wire wool spinning

Knowlton Church and Sigma 20mm f/1.4 together with wire wool spinning

Knowlton Church and Sigma 20mm f/1.4 together with wire wool spinning

Knowlton Church and Sigma 20mm f/1.4 together with wire wool spinning

Knowlton Church and Sigma 20mm f/1.4 together with wire wool spinning

Knowlton Church and Sigma 20mm f/1.4 together with wire wool spinning

Knowlton Church and Sigma 20mm f/1.4 together with wire wool spinning

Knowlton Church and Sigma 20mm f/1.4 together with wire wool spinning

Knowlton Church and Sigma 20mm f/1.4 together with wire wool spinning

Knowlton Church and Sigma 20mm f/1.4 together with wire wool spinning

Knowlton Church and Sigma 20mm f/1.4 together with wire wool spinning

Knowlton Church and Sigma 20mm f/1.4 together with wire wool spinning

Knowlton Church and Sigma 20mm f/1.4 together with wire wool spinning

Knowlton Church and Sigma 20mm f/1.4 together with wire wool spinning

Knowlton Church and Sigma 20mm f/1.4 together with wire wool spinning

Wire wool spinning video with Sony a7s and sigma 20mm

Here’s a little video of the spinning in action, you can see how dark it was. I was shooting this at 20mm, f/1.4 and ISO25600.. so pretty dark!

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  • November 23, 2015 - 12:50 pm

    Simon Brettell - Great stuff Greg . . . love that first star trail shotReplyCancel

    • November 23, 2015 - 1:38 pm

      greg - Thanks Simon – it was pretty cold by the time we’d done!ReplyCancel

  • December 13, 2015 - 4:07 pm

    Balu - Hi!

    What was the lowest ISO you could use at 1.4?
    How bad is the coma in the corners at 1.4, 2?ReplyCancel

    • December 19, 2015 - 2:33 pm

      greg - Hi Balu – the lens is usable at all ISO at 1.4 it’s amazingly sharp wide open across the frame!

      The coma looks pretty good – I’m hoping to get a chance to get some clear skies and test out for some astrophotography but in these shots it looked very good even wide open 🙂ReplyCancel

    • January 9, 2016 - 10:47 am

      greg - I recently used the 20mm art for some astrophotography – it performed very well.. stay tuned for a new article 🙂ReplyCancel