How to edit the Milky Way – Photoshop Tutorial

Check out my second tutorial here:
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In this video I show how I edit Milky Way Photos in Photoshop. I’ve learned this from various sources and from experimentation over the past year in a half while shooting time-lapse from dark skies.

Shot info:
Camera: Canon T3i (600D)
Exposure: 40s
ISO: 1600
Lens: Tamron 17-50mm 2.8 @ 17mm & F2.8
Shot on a computerized pan/tilt telescope mount tracking the stars.
I use a modified Meade ETX90 telescope mount.

Please let me know what you think. I’m always looking for new techniques.


Here’s my tutorial on how to turn this sequence into a Time-Lapse:

Here’s the gear I use:


27 thoughts on “How to edit the Milky Way – Photoshop Tutorial”

  1. Thank you! I'm going to try that! Gotta find that software first, just tried on CS2 and the noise correction is quite lame… or may be I'm not doing it correctly…

  2. when I attempt that final stage of sharpening where you use the duplicate background layer. I keep end sharpening the foreground and not the milky way, can' seem to find the step I have missed. Any help?

  3. This is THE BEST editing tutorial I have seen so far. This video really helped me learn how to process my images of stars really effectively. I haven't found anything even close to as good as this video anywhere else.

  4. Hi Kenneth, I have a big interest of learning night photography including my favorite Milky way and Iam so fustrated of making it the way you did. Im using CC 2014 and on the part where you were painting it white, I doesnt paint white it looks like Im getting low opacity of black..I could not change the color to white. Please help.

  5. How do u get that window in photoshop. I don't shoot in raw cause they are big files, and cant read on photoshop….

  6. sir how did you get that line visible in your picture ? how did you track it ?? any apps ? is there any video of yours for that ?

  7. I have been editing the milky way with LR and getting blah results, your tutorial really opened my eyes to using photoshop… don't know why I┬ádidn't┬áconsidered it before!

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