Last summer we were out exploring the area, and stumbled across the ruins of an old house near Red Bank Access in Gamelia, Arkansas. I have been planning on going back to it to shoot the Milky Way rising behind it. Since there is almost no light there (and to the south of this location there is very little light pollution) this should be an absolutely stunning location for shooting the Milky Way. The old building and lake in the foreground will provide a nice anchor for the image and will add considerable interest to the milky way shot – at least that is what I hope.
A friend approached me, and wanted get a few people together to go shoot, I suggested that we go to Red Bank. We had a favorable forecast, it was partly cloudy during the day, but the forecast was for clearing skies by 10 pm. We planned to shoot at 3 am, when the brightest part of the milky way would be at it highest point in the sky. During the day of, the forecast changed a little, calling for the clear skies to become partly cloudy at 3 am; so we moved up our shoot by an hour. As the night went it, it stayed pretty cloudy, and right around 1 am it cleared up. I arrived to the location right at 1 am. It looked awesome, I could see the Milky Way, and so I knew that it would photograph well. It had been almost a year since being at this location, and there was a TON of deadfall along the banks of the lake, it made getting to the ruins exceptionally difficult in the pitch black of a moonless night. As we actually arrived at the ruins, the sky filled up with heavy fast moving clouds.
Since there was a significant effort spent to get to the location, we decided to shoot some anyway, and I think I came out with a few interesting images. The clouds were lit by the lights from Mountain Home, and they had a very noticeable yellow tint, I ended up gelling our lights with a CTO gel, to match the color of the sky, then shoot in daylight white balance, giving the entire image an overall cooler color cast. In post, I added a bit of a color boost, and strengthened the over contrast.
If you want to learn more about shooting stars read my blog post here.