Shanti Stupa Dream – Long Exposure Night Sky Photo, Himalayas (and Happy World Photography Day!!)


Please click on the photo to view it larger and more clearly!  Thanks!

First of all, Happy World Photography Day!

The luminescent Shanti Stupa is a steep 555 steps above Leh at over 3657m/12,000 ft. in elevation, and was built by Japanese Buddhist Bhikshu Gyomyo Nakamura in 1991 when there were no roads or lights, using six donkeys for help. The stupa holds relics of the Buddha at its base, and was enshrined by the Dalai Lama. I’ve gone here on each of my three visits to Ladakh, the first time in 1997, six years after it was completed. As a bonus, I have been in contact with Mr. Nakamura, thanks to Joan L., and I am honored and super excited to say that he’s been describing how he built this and was complimentary toward my photos of the Shanti Stupa area!!!!

I “light painted” this incredible stupa with a flashlight in this 30 second exposure on a mountain overlooking Leh, past Changspa.  If you’ve been to Ladakh’s capital city of Leh, then you’ve seen it.  You can’t miss it.  It’s lit up at night as well, although they fortunately turn the lights off, making it easier for us night sky photographers to get a good photo of it without the harsh contrast of the lights!  Very sweet of them.  😀


Title: Shanti Stupa Dream
Info: Nikon D7000, Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8 lens. Light painted the stupa. ISO 200, 30 second exposure, f/2.8 19 June 2013, 12:15 am.
Photographer: Ken Lee
Location: Leh, Ladakh, Indian Himalayas.

Equipment:  Nikon D7000, Tokina AT-X 116, Feisol tripod.

You can see more of these photos here  on my Ken Lee Photography Facebook Page (poke your head in, say hi, and “like” the page if you would, uh, like). We discuss long exposure, night sky, star trails, and coastal long exposure photography, as well as lots of other things, so I hope you can join us!

And you can go to the Ken Lee Photography website, which has more photos from Ken Lee.  Thank you very much for visiting!



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