Photographing the Aurora Borealis or Northern Lights as they are also called is not only super exciting but also challenging. However with a little preparation you can get ready to do less thinking while feeling the cold and more shooting.
In this guide I’ll walk you through some easy steps to prepare and what to do while capturing breath taking images of aurora borealis. Remember the images may look a little flat out of camera, but nothing some post production curve changes can’t fix.
First off you will need a few things, of course a wide angle lens 12mm to around 24mm is best with a wide aperture. A selection of batteries fully charged, the cold WILL eat them quicker. Memory cards, again a selection of them is best and make sure you dual write if possible.
Take a plastic ziplock bag large enough to fit your camera and lens. Before bringing your camera into a warm place after shooting, put it in the ziplock bag, seal and leave until it warms up to room temperature. Doing so will prevent condensation from building up on the electronics and glass in your camera, do not remove the lens from your camera as this can cause some condensation to reach your sensor. This is important, especially when shooting in extreme temperatures and can be applied in both hot and cold temperatures where your hotel or accommodation maybe 10+/- degrees different to the outside. You can read more on how to prevent condensation on your camera by reading my blog post about the topic I posted early 2019.
Alternatively you can just remove the memory card and batteries and leave your camera in your car or a secure location outside.
Before you go make sure you have your camera sensor cleaned and lenses. Not only does this mean you get nice clean images but removes the chance of having to spend hours in post production removing as spot from your beautiful lines in the sky. Check your lens every-time before you start.