March 9, 2024: Northern Lights Photography Workshop Recap

March 9, 2024 – Northern Lights Photography Workshop Recap

The March 9, 2024 Northern Lights Photography Workshop was the second workshop this year. The January Night Sky Photo Workshop was canceled due to weather, however we were able to host the February 9th, Northern Lights Photo Workshop. The monthly night sky photo workshops can have different themes throughout the year. Near the spring and fall equinoxes they are focused on the northern lights because that is “aurora season” (Please note auroras can be seen any time of year, they are just slightly more frequent near the spring and fall equinoxes). In the summer months the Milky Way is more prevalent in the Northern Hemisphere (where the Lodge is located) so during those times the workshops offer a more in-depth discussion of our home galaxy. Throughout the whole year we offer educational initiatives at the Keweenaw Mountain Lodge in association with being the headquarters of the Keweenaw Dark Sky Park.

March 9, 2024 was a beautiful evening. Our Ambient Weather Station indicated it was 28 degrees before the workshop started. The guests at the lodge witnessed a colorful sunset over Brockway Mountain. It seemed as if Mother Nature wanted to provide us a little creative inspiration to start our night.

The sunset silhouetting Brockway Mountain.
The sunset from one of the Dark Sky Walking Paths.

Our regular instructor, Nate Bett, was not feeling well, and Tom Oliver was able to teach the class. Tom is currently the Director, Center for Science and Environmental Outreach at Michigan Tech and had previously worked at the Keweenaw Mountain Lodge. 

Tom Oliver discusses camera composition techniques.

We had one participant, a lodging guest attend the workshop. Having come from New York City to visit the Keweenaw and stay at the Lodge, she was treated to a personable one-on-one lesson on how to take night sky photographs. Tom touched base on camera techniques, locations to shoot, and equipment during the workshop. 

The March 9th workshop was a personable, one-on-one lesson for the guest.

The Night Sky Photo Workshops are broken into two segments: an inside presentation and an outside, hands-on portion. Outside it was still clear skies, ideal to take some night sky photos. However, the guest had traveled by plane and did not bring her photo gear with her. So Tom offered to run through his Photograph the Aurora Using Science, Data, and Forecasting slide deck to go more in-depth on the Northern Lights. Tom launched into a discussion on the science of the northern lights, referencing some of the many websites and apps that can help with aurora forecasting, which was of interest to our guest. 

A slide from the Photograph the Aurora Using Science, Data, and Forecasting presentation.

At the end of the night our minds were filled and we left the Lodge with more knowledge than when we came. 

Tom’s mind filled with knowledge.

Our next photo workshop will be held during the 2024 Upper Peninsula Dark Sky Festival in April.


Last modified on March 29th, 2024 at 6:42 pm