January 03, 2020 Slideshows » News

2019: Night Light in Review 

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David Wilson
The stars arc across the sky in their nightly parade in this view looking south from Boat Launch Beach, or Indian Beach, beneath the town of Trinidad, California. The star trails you see are the result of the stars’ motion across the sky during this several-minute exposure of the camera. In summer months the sky in this view would contain the core of our galaxy, the visually richest portion of the Milky Way. January, 2019.
David Wilson
Beneath the stars and a thin stretch of the Milky Way, Grandmother Rock gazed out across the Pacific in her endless contemplation, while the stars wheeled about Polaris above. The crescent moon, invisible past the left edge of the photograph, provided some of the landscape illumination as it set into the mists, while from inside College Cove some kind of light emanated, throwing light onto Pewetole Island. The bright light on the horizon was one of five or six fishing boats out at sea that evening. Occasionally they would train their powerful beams toward shore, bright enough to cast shadows. Trinidad, Humboldt County, California. February, 2019.
David Wilson
One road takes you home. Another leads you away. And some will take you inside yourself. Where are you going today? Pre-dawn Kneeland Road, Humboldt County, California. March, 2019.
David Wilson
Venus rises in the west as dawn chases the Milky Way over the Kneeland Road. This annotated image shows three neighboring planets and a couple notable stars. Saturn and Jupiter would be with the Milky Way for the rest of the season, only slowly changing their positions relative to it through the months. Expect their positions to change by next season. The more detailed area of the Milky Way low on the horizon is the core of our galaxy. [Note: This map and caption could lead the space aliens directly to us, so be responsible.] Humboldt County, California. March, 2019
David Wilson
Mysteries of the night reveal themselves in the darkness like the secret caves of the mind — if one knows where to look, how to see… This is a single, several-minute exposure of a beach cave on the rugged north coast of Humboldt County, California. April 9, 2019.
David Wilson
Guardians of the Night. The full moon rises behind towering redwoods standing watch on the Avenue of the Giants in the Eel River valley. It was 11:30 pm. A breeze played among the branches and grasses beside the road. Sunlight? Nope! The only light on the landscape was that of the moon, made bright from a long exposure in this photograph. Humboldt County, California. June, 2019.
Hmm, the stars gotta be around here somewhere... rainy night self-portrait on the corner of 5th and F, Eureka, Humboldt County, California. A long exposure stretched car lights into long streaks and blurred my own form in the image. May 16, 2019.
David Wilson
“A shooting star! Over near Jupiter!” I missed the meteor at the time, but not the magic of the night. Below us the Eel River glided between Redwood-covered hillsides under the night sky. I was with a former student and her friend and we played with our cameras while we stood in awe of the night. I found the meteor when I examined the photographs later. Humboldt County, California. July, 2019.
David Wilson
My brother Seth and I watch the world go by one summer night from the banks of the South Fork Eel River as it winds among the giant redwoods. It’s hard to beat that. Can you pick out any of the astronomical points? Richardson Grove, Humboldt County, California. August, 2019.
David Wilson
Late night cars paint their strokes of light onto the night’s dark canvas along a corridor of towering redwoods on US 101, the Redwood Highway. Photographed from the Avenue of the Giants, Humboldt County, California. August, 2019.
David Wilson
Ramparts stand watch over the great Pacific at the edge of the continent at Patrick’s Point. Behind the trees glows the town of Trinidad and vicinity. On the horizon, two fishing boats glare redly at each other. Patrick’s Point State Park, Humboldt County, California. September 2019.
David Wilson
Too numerous to label, stars, nebulae and planets abound in this image with some of the notable objects annotated. Not labeled is the Dark Horse Nebula; its foot is standing on Jupiter; can you spot the horse? Note how much closer to the Milky Way Saturn appears now. September, 2019, Pacific Ocean, Humboldt County, California.
David Wilson
On the night of October, 9, 2019, a PG&E-initiated a PSPS, or public safety power shutoff, left Humboldt County’s cities powerless and bathed in moonlight. Here the moon and some cars illuminate H Street and the historic Arcata Minor Theater in Arcata. Humboldt County, California.
David Wilson
No beach access here, a steep staircase descends to a narrow sandy trail snaking out to the point. Precipitous cliffs on either side offer a deadly drop to the wave-battered rocks far below. High above the ocean the point pushes into the waves crashing relentlessly against its base. I scurried along the narrow path in the dark in numerous attempts to illuminate the trail for the camera. My brother Seth would close the camera shutter for me after I’d painted in the observation area. This late in the year, Jupiter is below the horizon at this time. Saturn is one of the points just above the moon. Tepona Point, Humboldt County, California.
David Wilson
The stars were hidden behind a wintery cloud blanket, so I took myself down to Old Town Eureka to photograph some holiday lights. I set up outside the window of Many Hands Gallery, and what should happen by but a wooden Santa ornament clutching a little package. It hobbled stiffly past as if nothing were amiss, and I swear I heard it muttering about the Christmas rush. Then it paused to peer into the window display, cocking his wooden head from side to side on his stocky neck before scuttling back inside. Hm! Old Town, Eureka, Humboldt County, California. December 20, 2019.
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2/15
David Wilson
Beneath the stars and a thin stretch of the Milky Way, Grandmother Rock gazed out across the Pacific in her endless contemplation, while the stars wheeled about Polaris above. The crescent moon, invisible past the left edge of the photograph, provided some of the landscape illumination as it set into the mists, while from inside College Cove some kind of light emanated, throwing light onto Pewetole Island. The bright light on the horizon was one of five or six fishing boats out at sea that evening. Occasionally they would train their powerful beams toward shore, bright enough to cast shadows. Trinidad, Humboldt County, California. February, 2019.

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