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Old 5th December 2017
MikeOxon MikeOxon is offline
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Communal Night-Sky Photography Thread

I'm still new to this forum, so I hope it doesn't seem presumptuous to start a new thread. I suspect that I am not alone in having been encouraged to have a go at night-sky photography by the recent publicity given to the 'super moon'. I have also been inspired by the examples in Greytop's thread.

I don't intend this topic to be limited to lunar images but hope others will want to explore the possibilities for all types of astro-photography. Having discovered some of the computer-processing techniques that can be used to clarify such images, I am looking forward to trying some planetary images. Unfortunately, at present, there don't seem to be any bright planets above the horizon before my bed time

For the following image, I used my new Olympus E-M1 Mk ii, together with my Pan/Leica 100-400 mm lens, at full zoom, to capture a burst of around 50 shots of the 'super moon'.

The camera was mounted on a tripod and I used MF to achieve sharp focus, viewing a magnified image on the screen. I used spot metering to assess an exposure of 1/1250s @ f/8 ISO 640 (including -0.3EV compensation, to retain highlights)

The final image is as much a product of computer processing as it is of photography! I followed a 'recipe' that I found on the web at https://darkartsastro.ca/lunar-image...s-it-worth-it/

This recipe involved pre-processing the individual shots with PIPP software , then using Registax 6 to 'stack' the individual images and, finally, using Lucy-Richardson deconvolution (available in the Raw Therapee image processor) to remove the blurring caused by atmospheric turbulence.

My final result is attached below:
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Supermoon_20171203 [800x640].jpg (197.0 KB, 43 views)
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Old 5th December 2017
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Re: Communal Night-Sky Photography Thread

I have posted a few astro shots in the past see my gallery. Had clouds last two nights so couldn't get the Supermoon.

Your shot is good and certainly well focussed but for my taste its a little over sharpened.

If you want to try planets then many people actually use video and then process 100's or even a thousand frames in PIPP to be able to select the best ones to then stack to try and fix the atmospheric disturbance challenge.

Look forward to seeing your results.
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Old 5th December 2017
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Re: Communal Night-Sky Photography Thread

Many thanks for commenting, Wornish. I hadn't got as far as finding galleries yet, so have enjoyed looking at your photos. Clearly, there's a long way to go before tackling deep-space objects like the Andromeda galaxy

I did increase the sharpening when I reduced the size of the image, since I felt it brought out the '3D' effect on, for example, the Appenine Mts. I was trying to produce 'impact' rather than an 'analytical' image of the moon's features but, of course, there is always the matter of taste and I may well back off a little in future. I was, frankly, amazed at what could be extracted from the images by post-processing

I've been browsing the 'before and after' thread and have always believed that image processing is an integral part of photography (going back to darkroom days and the work of people like Ansel Adams)
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Old 5th December 2017
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Re: Communal Night-Sky Photography Thread

Kinda agree with Dave's comment about oversharpening, looks a bit over processed to me.

Huw's very smooth surfaces are a really good guide, showing much detail..

Poor Photo below shows the Alpine Valley. This is approx. 70 miles long and approx. 3 miles wide. That is my benchmark for a detailed photo.

But we are all learning, Dave has put some really good astro shots here, including the Amdromeda nebula.

We are lucky to have these talents to egg us on ........

Keep up the good work, and thanks for taking the lead over this astro thread............

(Shall just irritate all as I am off to Hawaii over Christmas and have very low light pollution to work with, as well as mosquito's..)

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Re: Communal Night-Sky Photography Thread

[quote=MJ224;434509]. ........

Keep up the good work, and thanks for taking the lead over this astro thread............

(Shall just irritate all as I am off to Hawaii over Christmas and have very low light pollution to work with, as well as mosquito's..)







I am not jealous.
Which island are you going to ? If its Big Island then you have to go up here.

https://www.lovebigisland.com/stargazing/
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Re: Communal Night-Sky Photography Thread

[quote=wornish;434513]
Quote:
Originally Posted by MJ224 View Post
. ........
I am not jealous.
Which island are you going to ? If its Big Island then you have to go up here.

https://www.lovebigisland.com/stargazing/
Yes the Big Island, near Kona..............

Hopefully will get up to 14,000 feet...........

Following advice today from Dave, and earlier from Huw I have re-processed the moon piccie below....

But the raw material ie the photo taken, is the most important part of the process, whatever tinkering you do with it...

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Re: Communal Night-Sky Photography Thread

I am constantly amazed at what detail is actually captured in an image.

I agree that post processing is an integral part of the process although some people don't. If its good enough for Ansel Adams then its ok by me.

Deep space astrophotography in particular is totally dependent on post processing and its part of the enjoyment / challenge.
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Old 5th December 2017
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Re: Communal Night-Sky Photography Thread

Thank you for commenting MJ224 and I'll look forward to seeing photos from Hawaii. Perhaps you (or someone) could explain to me how to get photos to appear directly in a post, rather than just an attached thumbnail.
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Re: Communal Night-Sky Photography Thread

Are you including them from the Forum gallery, Mike? If you are, I find the easiest way to do it is not by posting links, but to click the link for "My pics" in the compose panel as you write the post. This will open a new window with your gallery photos in, you can pick the one you want and there is a pull-down which allows you to select whether you want clickable thumbnails or the full image. And once you have chosen, it usually remembers it for next time.

As always it is far easier to see than to describe!

Hope this helps ... John
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Re: Communal Night-Sky Photography Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeOxon View Post
I'm still new to this forum, so I hope it doesn't seem presumptuous to start a new thread. I suspect that I am not alone in having been encouraged to have a go at night-sky photography by the recent publicity given to the 'super moon'. I have also been inspired by the examples in Greytop's thread.

I don't intend this topic to be limited to lunar images but hope others will want to explore the possibilities for all types of astro-photography. Having discovered some of the computer-processing techniques that can be used to clarify such images, I am looking forward to trying some planetary images. Unfortunately, at present, there don't seem to be any bright planets above the horizon before my bed time
Great idea Mike, thanks for starting this thread
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Old 5th December 2017
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Re: Communal Night-Sky Photography Thread

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Originally Posted by Greytop View Post
Great idea Mike, thanks for starting this thread
I'm pleased you approve - I didn't want to tread on toes I'd noticed that there are already 'communal threads' covering some of my other interests and am hoping this one will allow us to share some ideas in the astro field.

At the other end of the focal length scale, I have a Meike 6.5 mm f/2 fish-eye lens and, when/if we get a clear night again, I shall try a 'whole sky' picture.
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Old 5th December 2017
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Re: Communal Night-Sky Photography Thread

Following Bikie John's suggestion, I'm trying an image uploaded into my gallery:



This is a crop from an earlier attempt at a stacked image, which I took a few days before the full moon, when the lighting on the surface was more oblique. The 'Alpine Valley', which MJ224 considered to be a benchmark for a detailed photo, appears to show pretty well

I have been very satisfied with the performance of my Pan/Leica 100-400 lens for terrestrial photography (including shots taken in its close-focus range) and this seems to show that it works well on the moon, as well.
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Old 5th December 2017
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Re: Communal Night-Sky Photography Thread

Instead of using very long lenses, you ought to get closer to your subject!

;^)

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Re: Communal Night-Sky Photography Thread

Rocket leaves tonight at 11:00pm, and arrives back yesterday at 9:00am
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Re: Communal Night-Sky Photography Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Ford View Post
Instead of using very long lenses, you ought to get closer to your subject!

;^)

Jim
I stand on my step ladders to get a bit closer when taking moon shots.
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