La Palma is a small volcanic island located on the most north-westerly side of the canary archipelagos. Its location, topography, and clear sky facilitates astronomical observations and offers great creative opportunities.
Almost seven years after the release of the original "Island in the Sky" video, professional photographer Martin Heck went back to this Spanish territory to film the second part.
He brought state of art gears in order to records this video in 8K60. Most sequences were shot with high resolution full frame cameras like the Nikon D850 (45mpx) and the Sony a7R III (42 mpx) paired with sharp and fast lenses such as the Sigma 14-24mm f/2.8 Art, the Sigma 50mm f/1.4 Art, and the Zeiss Otus 28mm f/1.4. A few clips were also filmed in raw video with a RED Epic-W camera. A Tamron 100-400mm telephoto lens was also used for moon shots .
The cameras were attached to an eMotimo Spectrum head mounted on a 10 feet Dynamic Perception Stage One slider for the motion time-lapse sequences.
Martin Heck followed the regular 500 rule to capture the night sky and most shots were taken with a 15 seconds exposure, between f/1.4 and f/2.8 at 6400 ISO. Notice the relatively short exposure time for that type of photography. This is due to the final delivery of 60 frames per second because each second of time-lapse demands much more picture at this frame rate compared to 24 fps for instance. Longer exposure time would generate faster motion. Fortunately, these full frames camera are able to deliver clean images at high sensitivities.
Fstoppers asked Mr. Heck about his camera preference. He notes that both the Nikon D850 and Sony a7R III are excellent cameras but he thinks that the D850 is “more robust”, delivers “better files format” and benefits from a “better native lens selection”. However the a7R III has an “excellent light metering” module which is very convenient for day to night (holy grail) sequence as the camera can ramp the exposure automatically and very precisely in this type of situation.