This was taken by a compact camera, believe it or not.
In the beginning of my school year, I was graciously offered a ride to Porteau Cove by a friend's older brother to catch the Northern Lights. I'd never been up there before, but I had seen amazing work by some other photographers there including Nhi Le.
After receiving this offer, I scrambled to get my gear ready. I had a D700, 24-70mm f/2.8, and a 35mm f/1.4 ready in my bag along with a tripod when I thought to myself, wouldn't it be a fun challenge to see what I can achieve with the mighty RX1?
I fondly recall arriving there with only my messenger bag and tripod, while the others we met with brought along their huge DSLRs and fast lenses. I was a bit worried at first, but kept my faith in this camera as I had just shot the night sky in UBC the night before, and was quite happy with the results. I had also brushed up on my manual focus-by-wire skills that night, as the RX1 has garbage autofocus in low light.
This is a pretty accurate representation of what it looked like through human eyes when we arrived. Only the sky was faintly speckled with stars, it was virtually pitch black minus the cell phone flashlights we had with us.
After finding an ideal location, we plunked down our tripods and took out our gear. We had a beautiful view of the sky and mountains, hoping for the Northern Lights to show up in an hour or so.
This is what the scene looked like through the RX1's fantastic 35mm f/2.0 Zeiss lens. It's scary how far digital imaging has come after the advent of mirrorless.
It was around 45 minutes in that we realized the forecasts had been off, and "the day with the most visible aurora in months" became "the day where we kept thinking the clouds were the aurora only to be disappointed shortly after taking photos to check".
We were all able to take some amazing photos regardless of the aurora's absence. Porteau Cove is an absolutely beautiful place to catch the stars away from the city lights, and is most likely also just as beautiful during the daytime.
All in all, it was an amazing experience to finally see Porteau Cove through my own eyes, and by extension, my own lens. The RX1 totally exceeded my expectations just as it always had. While it is no longer in my hands, I will certainly pick up another one once the second version comes out and the prices for the first generation drops.