I brought my camera along for a trip when we had unexpectedly clear skies. Of course, the clouds rolled in just as I began to photograph Orion. Instead of fighting the clouds, I accepted them as Orion's shroud.
Test shot for my new camera using the 50mm lens with Orion as the target.
This is Orion's jeweled belt, the region around leftmost star Alnitak that features the Flame and Horsehead nebulas. This is just the luminance information and shows just how rich, complex, and structured the region is.
This is existing data that I revisited to process into a new image. What do you think?
It's a popular and iconic region: the first star on the 'belt' of the Orion constellation, Alnitak. This beautiful, bright star is flanked by the distinctive Flame Nebula and easily recognizable Horsehead Nebula. I collected two nights of data with the goal of creating an image that captures the delicate details of the dust and gases that make up the nebulae in this area.
My first deep space photograph from the new place. Orion was absolutely stunning this morning as it hung low in the horizon. This was pure camera equipment only - no tracking. Just tripod, Sony Alpha 6300, and an F/2 135mm Samyang lens.
A flaming Venus chases Orion to the horizon behind the Hornbeck Homestead in Florissant, Colorado.
A wide angle view of Orion next to a winter arrangement of bright Aldebaran, Mars, and the Pleiades.
A clear 50mm snap of Orion at its height in the winter sky.
I spent several evenings imaging this target to bring out the detail that surrounds the horse, including wispy filaments of interstellar dust and the rippling red curtain behind it.
I have a lot of images that target this nebula, but this is a favorite of mine. I processed it with the goal of preserving as much detail in the dusty foreground as possible.
A black and white image of the Horsehead nebula and nearby NGC2023.
Clear skies, a stable mount called the Sky Watcher Star Adventurer GTi, 30 1-minute exposures with a Sony Alpha 6300 camera, and the fast 50mm manual focus f/1.4 lens by Samyang all conspired to bring you this image.
To bring in 2023, I took a high resolution of NGC2023, an often overlooked nebulae that sprawls just beneath the famous Horsehead nebula (IC434.
A clear wide-angle view of the predawn sky on Grand Cayman.
A detailed exposure that illustrates the major stars and nebulae.
A very tropical Orion rises above the palm trees on Grand Cayman.
The scene of the horse and the flame has always been one of my favorites even as one of the most popular targets. It contains a bit of everything; dust and dark nebulae, reflection and emission nebulae, bright stars and brilliant colors. I grabbed some extra time on this target last night. Here's my latest incarnation.
An Optolong L-Extreme filter helped bring out the rich red that gives this deep sky object the lesser known name of Flame Nebula.
The Orion constellation.
A black and white rendering of the detailed nebulosity around Orion's belt.
A combination of new images for the Flame and Horsehead nebulae.
Beautiful and brilliant colors abound in the swirls of intergalactic dust lit by stellar jewels in the region of constellation Orion's belt.
This classic pairing of well-named nebulae Horsehead and Flame is one of my favorite regions in the night sky. It has a bit of everything, from a brilliantly shining star to bright tongues of heat blazing from the Flame Nebula, to the horse head's shadow casting a silhouette on billowing intergalactic dust. I'll keep improving my technique for this target!
First long exposure using my CGEM-II mount.
A capture of Orion's belt.
Took ~350 4-second 210mm of Orion's belt: Alnitak (with NGC2024 the Flame Nebula and IC434 the Horesehead Nebula), Alnilam and Mintaka. First pic of 2022!
This detailed photograph of the Orion constellation is rich nebulae. The Flame Nebula is on the left of the 'belt' and the Orion Nebula pops at the bottom of the 'sword'.
The Orion constellation is easily recognizable by the bright red Betelgeuse 'shoulder', three stars to form the 'belt' and a sword tipped with a nebula visible to the naked eye.
IC434 illuminates the nearby Horsehead Nebula that rears its head in silhouette. Dominating left is the triple star system Alnitak with its main superhot blue giant centerpiece that adorns the undulating waves of NGC2024, the Flame Nebula.
The Easternmost jewel on Orion's belt is brilliant Alnitak, a bright star that bombards NGC 2024 The Flame Nebula with ultraviolet light, causing the gases to glow and form a brilliant orange flame. Nearby, a cloud of dust is illuminated from behind by emission nebula IC434 to create a strikingly horsehead-like silhouette.
Although we tend to refer to IC434 as the Horsehead Nebula, it's actually an emission nebula hidden behind the Horsehead nebula. The latter is made up of dark dust that is illuminated by the former. This framing honors the beauty and grace of the horse's silhouette, but I'm working on a mosaic that captures the broader area to include the Flame Nebula (NGC2024).
A visual tour of Orion and nearby deep sky objects Aldebaran, Mars, and the Pleiades. From 12mm wide field shots of the night sky to 1645mm ultra close-ups of nebulae, this journey ties some of my favorite images together and shows just how interconnected objects in space can be. Includes shots of M42: the Great Orion Nebula, M43: de Mairan's Nebula, NGC1977 The Running Man Nebula, NGC2024 The Flame Nebula, NGC2023, IC434 The Horsehead Nebula, M45: The Pleiades, Mars, Aldebaran, Betelgeuse and Rigel.
2022-01-12 00:00:00 +0000
Collage of planets, galaxies, nebulae, and more that I captured in 2022. From Saturn and Andromeda to Thor's Helmet and the Milky Way.
2022-12-20 00:00:00 +0000
The footage of Orion I used to create the full Orion image from Grand Cayman.
2022-10-28 00:00:00 +0000
Hold on to your hats! We're going for a ride. 2023 was a breakout year for my astrophotography as I had my first access to dark sites, refined my Milky Way technique, got closer to the moon and started working with planets, processed my first comet, made my first solar filter to take solar shots, and a lot of new and improved targets with the addition of narrowband filters.
2023-12-14 00:00:00 +0000