From the enchanting landscapes of Scotland, Sweden, The Faroe Islands and Canada, to the breathtaking vistas of Norway... My journey as a nature-aligned brand and lifestyle photographer has graced me with the privilege and full-body-trill of witnessing and capturing the aurora on many occasions.
However, it was in March 2023, perched on the clifftops of Botany Bay in Broadstairs and from my home in Ramsgate, that a rare geomagnetic storm unfolded, leaving an indelible mark on my memory.
Believe me, the spectacle of the aurora borealis or northern lights is an experience that etches itself into your heart forever. Seeing it close to home made it all the more powerful.
The exciting news is, these nights are going to become more likely over the next few years! That's why I'm so passionate about showing you how to witness this incredible phenomenon, without the need to board a plane to Iceland.
The time is now
This is absolutely the right time to witness and photograph the aurora. Why? Because there’s science behind why seeing this magical sight from the UK is going to become more and more possible in the next few years.
But first, what are the northern lights?
Our sun goes through an 11 year cycle. As it gets more active towards the peak, it releases increased solar flares and charged particles into space. When these particles reach Earth, they interact with the gases in our atmosphere. This produces the colourful lights and dance of the auroras.
If there's a higher than usual level of solar activity, it can push the auroral oval (the area where the auroras are typically visible) further south, making it possible for the aurora to be seen in the UK, just as I did in Kent and Cornwall.
It’s the Sun's way of putting on a show for us here on Earth.
Our sun’s position in its cycle opens up possibilities and opportunities for the northern lights to be seen from the UK in the coming years.
My 3 tips to capture and photograph the aurora from the UK:
- Start by following the science and the data - track the conditions on the ground and in the sky. When these align, this is the time to begin the chase.
- Find a north facing viewpoint
- Make sure there’s no artificial light impacting on your view
It may seem complex to start with, it did to me! However, I spent ages studying how to understand the data and I’ve wanted to make it easy for you to become an aurora chaser too!
Ready to chase the northern lights like an expert?
Ever wondered how to capture the mesmerising aurora? I'm thrilled to unveil something truly exciting: a comprehensive self-study course to chase and capture the aurora like a pro.
Drawing from my wealth of knowledge and aurora experiences, this course is crafted with love to empower you with the skills, insights and insider tips needed not just to witness but to capture the enchanting beauty of the aurora borealis right from your doorstep.
This beginner's guide takes you step by step into the world of aurora chasing! It covers the science, practical photography techniques and the apps/tools I personally use. With just a smartphone (an iPhone 12 is an excellent starting point), a genuine interest in auroras, a connection to nature and a readiness to chase possibilities, you can embark on this soulful journey.
Curious to learn more? Click here. The course, priced at £49, encompasses 7 modules. Additionally, course members have an exclusive opportunity to add a 1:1 session with me! For in-depth discussions about all things aurora or to receive professional feedback on your images.
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