Sigma 14-24 f2.8 First Astrophotography Images - Jack Fusco Photography

When I got word that the Sigma 14-24 f2.8 DG HSM | Art lens was heading my way, I was pretty excited. The 14-24mm focal length range is a pretty go-to for landscape-astrophotography. We're just heading back in to "Milky Way Season" so the timing couldn't be better for a lens like this one. I'm hoping to share a bit of the story of my first nights out with then lens while providing a bit of insight in to what kind of results it can produce.

I would have loved if things lined up with the New Moon, but I still had some ideas that I knew could put it to the test. My first stop was the Anza Borrego Desert under a good bit of Moonlight. Fonts Point provides an incredible view of the Borrego Badlands and was beautiful all lit up. It’s a 4 mile off-road drive and then a short walk to the view point. 

I took my first few images, checked focus and then reviewed things on the back of my camera. I was pretty impressed with how solid everything looked and couldn't wait to keep shooting.

Fonts Point - Anza Borrego

The bright moon while I was in Anza Borrego meant more foreground detail, but it also meant more stars would be washed out. Since the exposures were a bit shorter, it made jumping in to the shots a little bit easier, too. After shooting here for a bit, Garnet Peak Trail in Mount Laguna was next on the list. The hope was to get here after Moonset and wait for the Milky Way to rise.

I expected the cold temperatures in Mount Laguna (mid 20's), but the winds ended up being a bit stronger than I anticipated. 

The primary issue with the winds wasn't so much the fact that it would feel a lot colder (about 12 according to my weather app), but that it could potentially introduce problems with the long exposures. A lot of the area along Garnet Peak Trail has a decent amount of plant life. That means even if the wind didn't bother the camera, anything in the foreground may end up being blurry due to be blown around. So, I had to be extra careful while framing things out. That would be the case on any night like this, but even more so since I was really hoping to test out this new lens and see how sharp it is.

I found a few compositions that would work and still tried my best to time the shots in between the stronger gusts of wind. I also ended up taking a few extra images just to place things safe. One of the funny things I didn't initially think about was how the wind would make standing still in an image a lot more difficult. If anyone was watching from the distance, it was probably a pretty funny show to watch me stand still, run back to the camera to check things out and then repeat that about 10 times while kicking my headlamp off and on.

Regardless of the wind, I was really excited about the images on the back of the camera. Everything was looking sharp all the way across the frame. I couldn't wait to check them out back at home. 


Stargazer - Sigma 14-24 f2.8 ART DG HSM | A

Sony A7RII - Sigma 14-24 f2.8 | 14mm | f2.8 | ISO3200 | 10 sec

Mount Laguna, San Diego, California

I found a few compositions that would work and still tried my best to time the shots in between the stronger gusts of wind. I also ended up taking a few extra images just to place things safe. One of the funny things I didn't initially think about was how the wind would make standing still in an image a lot more difficult. If anyone was watching from the distance, it was probably a pretty amusing show to watch me stand still, run back to the camera to check things out and then repeat that about 10 times while kicking my headlamp off and on.

The collage of images to the left gives a behind the scenes look at what goes on trying to get one of those shots. I normally use a redlight on my headlamp at night, but since I was spending so much time staring at the back of my camera my night vision was already a bit shot. 


Eventually, I was able to get in place and stay still long enough to get the shot you see below.

                    

I'm already hard at work on the follow up to this post with some closer looks in to a few images and a bit of the technical specifications around the lens. 


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