Gaze Into the Stars

Katelyn Conners

Milky Way_Bettymaya Foott
Photo courtesy of Bettymaya Foott – This photo titled, “Milky Way” was taken by Bettymaya Foott. Her work will be featured in the astrophotography exhibit at the Cedar City Library.


Take a closer look at the stars between Friday, Sept. 1 and Oct. 1 at the Cedar City Library where an astrophotography exhibit will take place.

The exhibit will feature multiple local photographers who have lived in the area, including Zachary Schierl, Mike Saemisch and Steve Schultz.

The photographs that will be hung in the library will all be astrophotography, or pictures taken of the sky. These can be a night sky landscape or taken of objects in the sky with a telescope.

The exhibit is part of the Southwest Astronomy Festival being hosted by the Cedar Breaks National Monument. Many of the photographs are from the same area.

Two local photographers, Schierl and Saemisch, will contribute mostly night sky or landscape photography.

Differing from the other two, Schultz focuses on the type of astrophotography where the camera and a telescope are hooked together to allow pictures of the stars and other astronomical objects to be captured. This is known as telescopic astrophotography.

For the most part, the photographers are local. However, they come from various backgrounds and have other specialties outside of astrophotography and night sky landscapes.

Schierl grew up in northern Arizona where he began his photography, but now lives here in Utah. He is also experienced in day-time landscapes, time-lapse and telescopic astrophotography as it can be seen on his website.

Saemisch is close to home in Cedar City since he resides at Brian Head. According to his website, he is a semi-professional photographer and takes many pictures at Brian Head Ski Resort.

The third photographer, Steve Schultz, is no longer considered “local” but did previously live in Cedar Breaks. According to his website, he enjoys many types of photography, but specializes in natural landscapes.

Most of the Southwest Astronomy Festival will take place on Sept. 22 and Sept. 23. Throughout the two days of the festival at least three astrophotography workshops will take place. One of the workshops will be taught by Saemisch and will be held at the Cedar Breaks National Monument.

A second workshop taught by another night sky photographer, Alex Chamberlain, and will take place in St. George. More information on the festival and other workshops will be available at the library.

Though the photos that will be shown at the exhibit in the library are from various artists they all capture the sky in Southern Utah. The photos will serve as an introduction to the Southwest Astronomy Festival at the library throughout the month of September.

The Cedar City Library is located at 303 N. 100 East and is open from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Friday and Saturday.

Story by
Katelyn Conners