Celestial Bodies Photos

Just click on the photo to see a larger copy of it. All these images were cropped for size purposes, the originals have more of a "border", and usually look better.
I just started doing these, so hopefully they will improve with time.

04/23/2024
The Moon
We were driving home and saw the full moon on the horizon. The cell phone didn't take a good picture of it - it looked too small - but once we got home, I grabbed the Canon, put on the zoom lens, and headed to the end of the driveway. It had already risen a couple degrees, but I was able to get some shots through the brush.


04/08/2024
Eclipse
Like 2017, Delaware had another 79% [or so] coverage event.
The camera lens is significantly bigger than the glasses we had, so the filtered images are minimal due to the inability to get a good shot while holding the glasses in front of the camera. Plus it is hard to focus on something that far away.
I did what I could, having taken 150 shots, and the cloudiness was actually a bit of a help.
The black-and-white looking ones are filterless, the orange ones are through the sunglasses.
I tried to present them in the order captured.
Some may appear to be deplitcate - and they are probably very close - but I just couldn't decide which I like the best. So I just kept more than I "needed to".









07/11/2022
The Moon
If you visit often, there is a good chance that the image below will be replaced with a better one in the near future. This text too.
After the adventure with the planetary alignment, I decided to try to capture the moon. It would have been neat, possibly, to get a crescent like what was visible on the alignment night, but now, as of this writing, it is nearly full.
This was actually through a window screen - believe it or not - and if I try to take another, it most certainly will be outside, probably on the front stoop or in the driveway.


06/25/2022
Planetary alignment: Part 2
This is an extension of the set of images in the table immediately below.
I set the camera for these rare probably once in a lifetime shots to capture the standard JPG images plus what are called RAW files. While I have heard of RAW images, I never did anything with them. Until now.
A JPG file is the output a camera / device creates based on the device's settings and the manufacturers algorithm for image processing.
A RAW file is an unprocessed file that allows the user to "develop" the image as they deem fit.
I finally got around to playing with the RAW image and here is an example about how different the two are.

This first image is one of the JPGs that I took that is, essentially, unusable - as you can see, it is overexposed and almost looks like it was taken in the daytime.


Here is the same image as above, but a me-processed RAW file. And yes, this truly is the SAME image as above.
The JPG processing removed the vignetting (darkened / shadows in the corners), which appears to be being done by the camera by zooming in slightly on the image. So while the dark corners are removed, there is less primary image too.
As you can see, this image is now, for the most part, very usable, unlike the one above.
I am not an image expert, so someone who IS may even be able to make this look even better.
And in this, you can also see the four primary planets in one native shot that didn't need stitching (see the table below for a little more info on this).

Lastly, here is a comparison of the left halves of the two images above.
Not only does the right look a LOT better, there is more picture (though there is a little vignetting) as the camera "zooms in" (as stated above, but VERY evident here). There is more road at the bottom on the right half, and the lamppost in the lower left of the image is larger on the left half because it is, again, "zoomed in" a little. Venus is almost cut off in the image on the left half and us just barely visible about an inch above the telephone lines.


06/25/2022
Planetary alignment
Our alarm clock was set for 4:10 AM. For some really weird reason, we both awoke about 3:45. Seriously, we have no idea why. Anyway...
We drove down to the canal, I set up the camera, and took some shots of the night sky and - the planetary alignment. Mercury, at some point during the event (it lasted a couple weeks), was supposed to be visible, but either we were too late in the cycle, too late in the morning (it had already dipped below the horizon), or too early in the morning (it hadn't appeared yet). But at least we got four of the five planets.
All shots were with a Bulb exposure. The shutter was opened for about 20-25 seconds for most of these.
There was a little bit of clouds. The moon was a very small crescent, but due to the long exposure and clouds, it doesn't really look like it...

The main "bright lights" in the sky from the lower left are Venus, the Moon, Mars, and Jupiter.
Camera settings: 16mm lens, ISO 1600, f5.6, shutter 3.1 seconds


Pointed the camera to the north a little, and left the shutter open a little longer too.
The main "bright lights" in the sky from the lower middle are Venus, the Moon, Mars, and Jupiter.
Camera settings: 16mm lens, ISO 1600, f5.6, shutter 18.9 seconds


Pointed the camera to the south past the first shot.
The main "bright lights" in the sky from the lower left are the Moon, Mars, and Jupiter.
Camera settings: 16mm lens, ISO 2000, f5.6, shutter 22.8 seconds


Pointed the camera even further to the south.
The glow on the horizon is the Salem, NJ, nuclear plant. And the main "bright lights" in the sky across the middle are Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn.
Camera settings: 16mm lens, ISO 2000, f5.6, shutter 22.7 seconds


Pointed the camera a little further straight up from the one just above.
The main "bright lights" in the sky across the lower third are Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn.
Camera settings: 16mm lens, ISO 1600, f5.6, shutter 23.4 seconds


Finally, a stitch showing all the above together, but since it is a stitch, the exact position of the celestial bodies may not be in perfect placement (like Mars) - but that isn't me, that's Affinity doing that.
This is a very big image if you click on it, with the intent to retain some of the detail as well as some of the feeling of the vastness of space.


The same as above, but with labels. This can be used to figure out what are in the other images further above too.


06/24/2022
Stars
In preparation of the next day's planetary alignment, went out onto the balcony and shot some more "test photos".
There are three different angles of the sky with nothing special, except the Big Dipper in the last one.
Camera settings: 16mm lens, ISO 2000, f5.6, shutter 16.8 seconds


One of the dippers toward the north.
Camera settings: 16mm lens, ISO 2000, f5.6, shutter 24.8 seconds


Camera settings: 16mm lens, ISO 2000, f5.6, shutter 25.0 seconds


06/20/2022
STARS
In preparation of the upcoming planetary alignment, went out onto the balcony and shot some "test photos".

Camera settings: 24-105mm lens, ISO 25600, f5.6, shutter 2.1 seconds


Camera settings: 24-105mm lens, ISO 25600, f5.6, shutter 5.8 seconds


08/21/2017
ECLIPSE - 2017
Delaware experienced ~79% coverage.
With a filter and a 18-55mm lens.

No filter and a 18-55mm lens.

With a filter and a 75-300mm lens.


09/08/2013
An interesting shot of the moon and... Venus?

Older
A scanned photo of the sun or full moon, with significant fog.


This is primarily Orion and the area.
We got a new lens for the XTi and this is our first star photo.
Regular photo.

Lightened version of the above.
More stars, and more colors.


The moon


More of the moon