Panorama of Panarea with Stromboli and the Milky Way

A limited edition night sky photograph

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Panorama of Panarea with Stromboli and the Milky Way

This night sky image by Adam Butler is available in any bespoke or custom size up to 240 x 500cm in a single panel. Please contact me for details.

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The view of the night sky is for me one of the most enduringly magical features of the Aeolian Islands. The island of Panarea has no street lights, and when it’s a quiet time of the year with few houses with their terrace lights, the view of stars is truly as spectacular as anywhere in Europe. Only in the north western parts of Scotland, far away from towns and cities, are the skies along the coast darker – see the light pollution map here. This is why this Panorama of Panarea with Stromboli and the Milky Way is so magical.

The pollution is measured on what is known as the Bortle scale; and since Panarea’s villages are all on the eastern side, facing away from the main islands, the only artificial lights you see when looking out to sea is from the tiny village of Ginostra on Stromboli, and the coastline of Calabria and the north eastern tip of Sicily, 50km away. Behind Dattilo you can see the lights  on the Capo Vaticano promontory, and the

This unique setting I of course have taken full advantage of, especially on cool, early summer nights as crystal clear as this was, captured in mid-June 2021. Not only are the skies as dark or darker as anywhere in Europe or along the entire Mediterranean, but the view from Panarea also features the magnificent and sculptural rocky islands of Basiluzzo and Dattilo, as well as the regularly erupting cone of Stromboli, which makes this view even more unique.

This wide panoramic view here consists of 24 separate high resolution images of 10 second exposure, taken with the phenomenally sharp Nikon 50mm S lens, set at f2. I used my trusty and super high resolution Nikon Z7 cameras seem on a sturdy RRS panoramic gimbal. This allowed me to very accurately shoot 4 layers of images, each row 6 images across. In this manner, the resulting resolution and detail across this wide view is phenomenal; far, far in excess of what any other method might produce. Using a 50mm lens also completely eliminates the distortions and stretching, with subsequent loss of quality and “comatic” aberrations in the stars at the edges, which all wide angle lenses introduce.

I am really proud of this image. This is a cropped version of the original which can be see here, which is a bit taller, but I think the 2:1 format really works well to show the sweep of the Milky Way and the multitude of stars visible in the sky on a moonless night, along with the mysterious and evocative forms on the horizon, with Stromboli doing what it does best, erupting a plume of lava into the night sky, at left.

The volcano island of Stromboli from above


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Limited edition

This image is in a limited edition of 100.

Each print comes with a certificate of authenticity which also signed, numbered and dated.

All of my prints are signed with edition number and title beneath the printed area, which you can decide whether or not to show when mounting and framing. See a video of me doing this.

Acrylic glass prints will have a small and faint embedded digital signature at lower right or lower left.

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Each print is either printed by me, or in professional labs in the UK or Europe, and each is carefully checked before sending it out to you.

Your print also comes with a lifetime guarantee*.

Unframed prints are shipped out to you in cardboard tubes, framed or mounted pictures in specially made crates.

*Assuming they are not left in direct sunlight or in excessively humid locations.

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