A beautiful conjunction of the moon and two planets made the last evening of Jan 2017 quite nice. The Moon joined Venus and Mars on this evening and I just had to get some shots.
I could have used a tripod for these, but I took the images by propping the camera on the top of a car. Consequently, I had lots of rejected images due to motion blur. But, luckily, I got a three steady ones that were good enough to post. The forth image below was a repair job, but it came out OK after correcting it for my unsteady hands. 🙂
These last two are actually composites. The one right above had motion blur and as mentioned previously, I was able to fix it. But, fixing it messed up the trees. So, I had to composite the good trees back in from the original. In the second image above, the moon was replaced with a better version from the 200mm lens.
With the heavy light pollution (LP) I’ve had to deal with where I’m imaging from lately, I decided a few open clusters would be better targets than anything too faint like nebulae and galaxies. At around 10:30 pm on this particular night, M67 was in perfect position to be imaged.
The LP limited me to 1 minute exposures at ISO 400, so it is not a very deep image. Getting rid of the LP in processing knocks the colors out and I had to work hard to get a little of the colors back. Oh, well… at least I’m able to get something useful out of the data.
Here’s Comet Encke on Jan 29, 2017. I imaged it two years ago when it last came around. On this night it was very low in a very bad LP zone right above bright parking lot lights and street lights. I’m surprised anything even registered. As you can see, it was small and dim and almost, but not quite, swallowed up by the LP. 🙁
On Jan 29, 2017, a two day old moon was in the sky and I shot it first thing before it sank too low to image. This is somewhat of an HDR image in that I took a series of 4 exposures, long to short, to try and get the earthshine and details in the crescent. I aligned and stacked them in PS with about a 50% blend for each exposure.
Images of Comets, Nebulae, Galaxies and Star Clusters