July 2009 Temecula Trip

Andromeda Galaxy
52x60 @ ISO800 f/5 750 mm

We enjoyed the trip to Temecula so much last month that we went back again to the vineyard. I added an Autoguider to my setup this month in hopes of having more salvagable data, and indeed it did help. Whereas on previous shots I would have to throw away just under 50% of the exposures, I could now keep about 80%. The CG-5 mount would still have a little bit of random jerkiness here and there which would ruin some exposures, but its less bothersome now.

So, this month I shot 4 targets. Two of them are the two largest (in apparent size) galaxies visible from the northern hemisphere: Andromeda and Triangulum. They are both part of our "local group" of galaxies. Then there is the Trifid nebula, which gets it name from the fact it has diffuse, emissive, and dark nebulas in one. Finally, M45, the Pleiades, a nice cluster of stars that you can spot even from bright city locations.

Triangulum Galaxy
31x75 @ ISO800 f/5 750 mm
Trifid Nebula
15x75 @ ISO800 f/5 750 mm
The Pleiades
22x60 @ ISO800 f/5 750 mm


4 photos

June 2009 Temecula Trip

The Lagoon Nebula
33x60 @ ISO800 f/5 750 mm

Liz and I went to Temecula, CA to stay out at a vineyard for some relaxation, and some astrophotography. I'll leave it up to you to decide who wanted what.

We rent a little room out on a vineyard about 6 miles out from the city center, and the milky way can clearly be seen out there. The astrophotos come out quite a bit better than from the suburban areas of OC/LA counties so I hope to make it out more often.

Anyway, this trip resulted in one of my favorite Astrophotos yet, the Lagoon Nebula. I also took my first shot of Jupiter (and its 4 Galilean moons are visible in thoe shot).

Recently I acquired my first prime lens, a 100mm macro lens, and it did not go to waste on this trip. Two of the shots included here are with that lens, and they couldn't be any different from each other. The first is a fly macro shot, the first one I've taken of an insect that wasn't totally blurry. The second shot with the lens was of the Antares region of the sky..one of the most colorful regions in the sky. This lens really can do it all.

The last shot was something I took in one of the many antique shops in old town Temecula. I like technical and mechanical things, and big box of old gauges appealed to me.


5 photos

June 2009 - A month of black and white shots?

Didn't mean for the month to come out this way, but some of the best shots I had really deserved to be black and white.

1/250 @ ISO800 f/4.5 60 mm
1/60 @ ISO400 f/4 40 mm
Wet Leaf
1/1000 @ ISO1600 f/11 100 mm


3 photos

May 2009 Photos

The Moon
12 x 1/320 @ ISO400 f/5 750 mm

Starting to try astrophotography. The moon was the first target I attempted, for obvious reasons. My second target was Saturn, and wow was I impressed to see the rings. Looking at the photo now I'm not sure why I was so impressed, but at the time it felt like a big day in my life.

I did attempt to do some shots of M51, one of the few galaxies that I could reasonable have a view of from my tiny patio, however the light pollution in the city was too much to overcome. We packed our bags and went to the RTMC up in Big Bear, CA. It was COLD, but I had a great time and it ended up being my first real taste of deep space photography. I'm hooked.


6 photos

April 2009 Photos

1/200 @ ISO200 f/5.6 135 mm

Most of these photos were taken in La Jolla while we were there to run a half marathon. The ducklings are regular visitors to our patio at home.


5 photos

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First Saturn pic - Garden Grove, CA

1/40 @ ISO1600 f/12.5 1875 mm

La Jolla Sunset - La Jolla, CA

1/50 @ ISO200 f/5.6 33 mm

Fly Macro - Temecula, CA

1/1000 @ ISO400 f/6.7 100 mm

Ocean Splash at La Jolla Cove - La Jolla, CA

1/2 @ ISO200 f/2.8 33 mm

Dancin' - Garden Grove, CA

1/60 @ ISO400 f/4 40 mm

IC5146 - Cocoon Nebula - Anza, CA

23 x 2min @ ISO1600 f/6.25 500 mm

Cat - Garden Grove, CA

1/250 @ ISO800 f/4.5 60 mm

The Pleiades - Temecula, CA

22x60 @ ISO800 f/5 750 mm

Orion Nebula - Lake Elsinore, CA

58x30 @ ISO1600 f/5 400 mm

The Pleiades - Lake Elsinore, CA

20x120 @ ISO1600 f/5 400 mm

sky conditions


Lake Elsinore