I’d had this shot in mind for a while. I’d never tried a single exposure star-trail and kept driving past this tree and thinking it would be a perfect subject. Late one night I parked up and hopped across a few fields to have a go. I guessed the settings I would need. A decent amount of light pollution meant I was able to achieve a good silhouette and I managed to capture a beautifully clean image. Polaris, being at the axis of rotation (Northern Hemisphere) lies very close to Celestial North and is the star the ancient mariners would have used to navigate. Also, it meant by pointing my camera towards it I was able to get circles of stars. That and a lucky Iridium Flare from a passing satellite helped to balance the shot and show the passing of time in a single exposure. My first star-trail and still one of my finest.
This photograph is distance and time in one shot. Polaris 433.8 light years away, the sun hitting the solar panels of an Iridium class satellite in Low Earth orbit and a tree near Bassenthwaite. All in one 3576 second exposure.