About the Blog

This blog contains recent projects, activities, and musings about astrophotography and space, to view my main webpage with prints for sale, final images, and Annie's Astro Actions, please visit: www.eprisephoto.com


Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Small objects are quite difficult (at least for me!)

So I have quickly learned that for some reason I have alot more difficulties shooting small objects (relatively speaking in the sky), such as galaxies and small planetary nebulas, than objects like nebulas. I had always heard nebula photography was incredibly difficult so this flip-flop in what I expected has kinda taken me by surprise. Over Christmas I shot a few smaller galaxies, most of which I had to scrap the data on as wind caused too much movement in the scope, but here is one I got of the Bear Claw Galaxy in LRGB, 30 second subs, about 80 of each channel:

Processing this to get an even background was difficult, even with flats and darks, so I thought I would give another small object a try once I got back home. Last night I shot NGC 1501, a small planetary nebula and found I had the same problems with the background, but eventually I think I came up with an ok result. LRGB, 27 second subs, Lum channel - 180 subs, RGB channels - 85 subs each.

Neither are great and neither are up to being hung on anyone's wall, but its all about learning, and over the past few months I think I have done just that. . .

I dont know if the small object difficulty is due to me being on an alt-az mount still and limited to 30 second or less subexposures (I suspect it does play a great part of it), or some other reason, but with the ccd camera I am using (Meade DSI II Pro), and my CPC800 I have a very narrow FOV so small objects are about all I can do in there. I do have an Orion EON 80ED that I use for imaging as well and get a larger FOV, not to mention my Nikon D40 that has a significantly larger chip than the DSI II Pro does, but it's results are not ideal either thanks to chromatic aberrations and other issues.

I suppose no camera will ever be perfect, and it does indeed seem like processing is the main limiting factor in astrophotography, so as the New Year starts I will continue to collect photons and in my spare time work on processing and reprocessing objects until small objects dont cause as much processing frustrations and I continue to roam the skies for more of them to shoot.

1 comment:

  1. I think this planetary shot with such short subs is great!


Monitor Calibration

Monitor Calibration
The grayscale above presents 24 shades of gray from pure white to solid black. If you cannot see all 24, your monitor needs calibration to view the astrophotos correctly: I recommend the site linked in the image