Blending mosaics of the Moon like this has become incredibly easy in recent years. The old days of 1990’s and early 2000’s photoshopping it would be a very manual affair with masks and adjustments. Now, a simple click will blend images of different brightness in to a seamless image. Photoshop doesn’t show any sympathy for all my painful hours of processing such moon mosaics in years gone by!
Jupiter has been moving through the night sky over the last few months as it becomes more of a evening object. It has been gliding past the bright star Spica and on the night of 11th April formed a nice triangle with the bright (99.7% illuminated) Full Moon. Above is a photograph from the night and below a photograph of the equipment taking some of the images.
Continuing with my theme of fun and relatively straight forward astrophotographs using my little Fuji X-E2 camera, this is the beautiful Rosette Nebula near the constellation of Orion. Taken through my little Megrez 90 refractor of only 90mm aperture this came up quite easily from 1600ISO 5 minute exposures.
I enjoyed teaching participants how to take photographs through such telescopes at the recent Perth Observatory workshop which focused on astrophotography using telescopes. There will be another one or two of those workshops coming up on the other side of Winter.
What a busy start to 2017 I’ve had! Four workshops and counting, public talks to well over 100 people, 60hours/month volunteering at the Perth Observatory and so much more! It’s no wonder that it’s hard to find time for astrophotography other than regular scripted research observations.
Here are some photographs from a recent astrophotography workshop held at the Perth Observatory. It was full day, going from 12:30pm until 10pm, but for me that means 10am until midnight.
After all these workshops it’s been good to spend a small but enjoyable amount of time in my own observatory with my simple little camera (Fuji X-E2) mounted on my Megrez 90 refractor telescope. This rewarding combination is a great fun way to reinvigorate astrophotography interest. While the following images are only short sequences, resulting in less than perfect results, it shows what can be done in a night of fun light-hearted astrophotography.
It’s so much fun to be involved at the Perth Observatory (where I volunteer with the Perth Observatory Volunteer Group), and it’s nice as a little reward for the hundreds of hours volunteering every year to have the pleasure of photographing on-site now and then (although it is hard to fit around the things to do!). Last night I enjoyed some late night photography after a tour and this photograph of the historic Astrograph Telescope is one of the highlights from the evening.
Visible through the opening of the dome is the Southern Cross, Coalsack (dark nebula) and Eta Carina nebula. Good timing to nab them through the roof!