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Thursday, July 23rd, 2009
This entry is basically for me......to remind me of how far I have come and how far I have yet to go......should I decide to go there.  I am not sure I am ready for a greater commitment.   Considering where I started.....I would have been doing multiple back flips if I had produced images like I am today.   Yet.......you basically have to move forward or risk going backward.
 
1.  Where I started in May 2007.  Ugly, but I was thrilled with it.   My very first DSO!
     M13:   Celestron 4" Mak-Cass, original Meade DSI, single arm alt-az mount.  
 
2.  M13 A year later.........getting better.  80mm ST refractor, Meade DSI, Sgl arm Alt-
     Az mount
 
3.  M13 Today......much better.  5" Newt, StarShoot II, CG5 Goto mount, unguided
 
4.  Where I need to go.  Neil Heacock's recent image of M13.   8" Vixen reflector, Canon 
     DSLR, autoguided, processed well!  * thank you, Neil
 
I have learned a lot and had a lot of fun in the last 2+ years.   If I knew then what I know now, I might never have started, but that's another story for another time.
 
When I started (afocal snapshots of the moon), my goals were modest.....to simply duplicate the view through the eyepiece.   I was amazed that it could be done.   Later, with a CCD camera and a crude tracking mount, I set about to get some pretty pictures of my favorite deep sky objects, to hang on the wall......as kind of souvenirs of my observing sessions.    I found that printing photos and viewing them from a few feet away, hid many of the flaws that stand out when viewing the same photo on the computer screen.
 
It quickly dawned on me that I was capturing features and details in the objects that I could not see through the eyepiece......especially when viewed from my backyard or driveway.   Now, although my original goals haven't changed dramatically, I have the experience and tools to eliminate many of the glaring flaws in my early efforts.   Now, it's a matter of refinement.   In no way would I call myself a serious astrophotographer, but I am doing better work, and I am still having fun.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
  
 
 


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