• Close-up of Comet Neowise at 900mm f/6.3
  • Sunrise Jura mountains

Goat Morning! Comet Neowise Revisited

The spectacle of the comet Neowise enchanted viewers all over the globe – including me.


Comet Neowise

In March 2020, the Neowise comet was first spotted by a space observatory from NASA. This observatory is called Near Earth Object Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer, aka NEOWISE. This comet with its long tail was visible by the naked eye and enchanted people all over the world. Needless to say, I was excited to see this object myself and did so on two occasions.

Comet Neowise Switzerland Sigma 56mm f/1.4 8s iso1000
Comet Neowise Switzerland Sigma 56mm f/1.4 8s iso1000

Photographing Neowise

In terms of taking pictures of a comet, it is preferable to use a longer lens that retains a wide-open aperture. For example, a portraiture lens such as a 85mm f/1.4 is an excellent choice. Depending on your composition either a wider or narrower focal length might be suitable. I used a Sigma 56mm f/1.4, which gave me a 85mm full frame equivalent on my APS-C sensor. For further information about settings, please have a look at the individual pictues.

Photography gear to take pictures of the comet Neowise
Photography gear to take pictures of the comet Neowise

Neowise Night Out One

The first night out took place with Mike, who you might know from other fishing and photography trips. Instead of getting up at the inhuman time of 2am, we opted to sleep outside. Hence, we bivouacked at the top of a mountain where we slept on the stairs due to uneven terrain. Apart from a few photographers, there were about a dozen goats. Whereas the photographers disappeared at around midnight, the goats kept our company. Later that night, these animals became a tedious obstacle on the stairs.

GOAT MORNING! Photographing the Neowise comet in Switzerland
GOAT MORNING! Photographing the Neowise comet in Switzerland

Returning from the outlook by 5.30am, we saw the first people arriving for sunrise. Luckily, we decided to relocate to a less popular spot. This one allowed us to take in the serene moment without the crowd. Moreover, we discovered a wee little wood frog among the leaves. What a surprise.

Neowise Night Out Two

On another occasion, I convinced my girlfriend and Andy to join me to see Neowise again. This time, I wanted to pay more attention to composition. Therefore, I was looking for a point of interest doing justice to the majestic comet. Settling for a castle in the nearby hills, I miscalculated the elevation. Thus, we had to relocate and were not able to see Neowise at the best time. Later that morning (read 4am), I was able to tick off this once-in-a-lifetime shot, although not at the best possible time.

Bucketlist shot accomplished
Bucketlist shot accomplished

Any chance of seing the Comet Neowise again?

Unfortunately, the comet called Neowise will not return for 6’800 years. Therefore, neither you nor I will see it ever again, unless time travel or immortality will be achieved. However, there are other comets visiting earth in the near future, which you can find on this website.

 

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