Today, a guest article from well-known astrophotographer Jerry Lodriguss at Astropix.com. Jerry shows you how to easily take a great image of the Milky Way… just one of the many tips in his Beginner’s Guide to DSLR Astrophotography. Take it away, Jerry…
If this hasn’t happened to you yet, it will.
It’ll go something like this…
You’re out with your telescope on a pleasant summer evening, up late to get a preview of the nebulae and star clusters along Scorpius and Sagittarius. The sky is clear, the seeing steady, and you can stay up all night because you don’t have to work tomorrow.
Then, as you’re getting your best-ever view of M7, or M8, or the great Sagittarius star cloud, you notice something strange. The dim stars begin to fade. The images of the brights stars suddenly have ghostly white haloes. And finally, you can barely see anything at all.
If time is short but you need a good night-sky “fix”, then grab yourself a pair of binoculars and head outside to scan the heavens. Which binoculars are best for stargazing? The answer is, quite simply, a pair of image-stabilized (IS) binoculars. IS binoculars give stunning low power views of the night sky without the dreaded “image shake” of standard binoculars. It’s hard to read a review that doesn’t rave about these advanced optical systems for astronomy or terrestrial use.
We haven’t done an observing tip in a while. So here’s one that’s brief but a little… unusual. If you like to look at the sky with your unaided eye or binoculars, but don’t like getting a stiff neck and sore back, then today’s idea might be worth trying out. It takes a little practice, but it’s simple and works amazingly well.
A special treat today for you… an exclusive interview with astrophotographer Jerry Lodriguss in which he shares with you the basics of taking a simple but quite lovely photo of the night sky with a digital camera. No telescope required.
Jerry’s a world-renowned astrophotographer and a former professional sport photographer who was 3 times nominated for a Pulitzer Prize. His astrophotos have been published in Sky and Telescope and NASA’s Astronomy Picture of the Day, and he’s published three books about astrophotography including The Beginner’s Guide to DSLR Astrophotography.