Small Town Lights by Andrew Rhodes

Photo of the Week: Small Town Lights

Photo by Andrew Rhodes

Photo of the Week
August 23rd, 2013

"Small Town Lights" by Andrew Rhodes

“Small Town Lights”

Andrew Rhodes
Northern Virginia &
Washington DC
Canon EOS 6D
Canon EF 24-70mm/f2.8L
RRS Gear:
BH-55 LR Ballhead
B6D-L L-plate
(Sky / Foreground)
ISO 6400 / 20,000
f/2.8 / f/2.8
15 sec / 30 sec

“I decided on a whim to hop in my car at about 11pm on a Wednesday night to take advantage of the crystal clear night and get some Milky Way shots. My fiancee looked at me like I was crazy, but I’m 4 weeks away from an Iceland trip and wanted to get some astro practice on my new 6D. I ended up about an hour west of DC, in a pitch black pasture off a remote country road. I couldn’t see 6 inches in front of my face, so I had to let my camera show me the scene. After some trial and error with the stars, and a few trips to the haystack to set up my cell phone light as a focus point, I ended up with this shot (these 2 shots, to be exact). The foreground shot required another 15 seconds of exposure and another 10000 ISO to get something visible in the pitch black. Thankfully, setting the shot on the BH-55 was the one simple part. And as usual, combining the two shots was painless because the alignment was dead on.”
-Andrew Rhodes

Image Copyright © 2013 Andrew Rhodes. All rights reserved.


  1. Joe Banaag says:

    Looking forward to your astro shots from Iceland, Andrew!

  2. As a fellow DC metro photographer I must say kuddos to you for the great shot. It’s hard to get away from the light and hustle and bustle of the area to get something as awesome as this. As a avid user of Really Right Stuff I second your praise of their gear. Great shot and look forward to seeing more!

  3. Thanks so much for the feature RRS! And thanks so much for the comments, Joe and Aaron. Iceland is going to be an amazing adventure, and I’m sure I’ll have a ton of shots to upload if the weather cooperates. Aaron… tell me about it! The light pollution in DC is absurd, but thankfully we have a dead zone close by in Shenandoah NP, and the West Virginia mountains. You can at least shoot in that direction, or from atop Skyline Drive, and avoid most of the ground light.

  4. Matthias says:

    Hi Andrew, what an amazing shot!
    I haven’t done any astro photographie yet but it motivates me to try it out 🙂
    I just wanted to know, which focal length you used for this shot?

  5. Hi Matthias,

    This shot was at 24mm on a 24-70mm f/2.8 L lens.


Reply to Andrew Rhodes Cancel Reply