Some new, processed photos.

This was on Saturday when I went to a dark site called Shivanahalli for observing / photography.

These are manually tracked photos on film (5 – 10 minute exposures).

The trouble (and fun!) with manual tracking and film is that you hardly ever get things right. In the auto-tracked domain, there isn’t much effort involved other than pole alignment and setting up auto-guiding. And the major problem is the film – whereas if someone flashes a torchlight during an exposure with a digital camera, you lose one frame… at max. 6 minutes of exposure, because that is the maximum exposure you usually give in a digicam (you stack up several frames at high ISO, to produce an equivalent of a long exposure). If somebody flashes a torchlight during a manually tracked film exposure – you lose 15 minutes of hard work!!! And if one frame goes wrong, you can just drop it in digital exposures. In film exposures – it is monolithic – only one frame – so if that goes wrong, you’re whole exposure is gone!

Needless to say, only 3 out of 5 photographs that I took came out well. And after processing, here they are:

Constellation Corvus


Although there is absolutely nothing interesting in Corvus, I like the shape of the constellation. So I took this photograph. It so happens that this turned out to be the best of all the photos I took, unfortunate as it may be.

Constellation Crux

Now, that was a really bad photo. I haven’t been able to give it my best processing as yet. I don’t think I will give any more time to this either. This photo was taken through heavy haze, so it is difficult to process. Omega Centauri is on the top left, Eta Carinae (and Theta Carinae??) at the bottom right.

Southern Skies

Of course, it is a little overprocessed. I like it that way, anyway. Notice the Coalsack. I didn’t expect that! Omega is the bright object to the 7 o’ clock of the center. I liked Eta Carinae as well. Running Chicken nebula (?) has appeared too.
To date I haven’t got a good photo of Orion. 😦

I was expecting one this time atleast, but it turns out that somehow I’ve got trails in the North-South direction! That’s ruined the exposure 😦

Anyway, there’s a next time. And there’s still the fun of processing Shashank’s photos! 😀 Shashank got a good shot of Orion at Shivanahalli, so here’s the processing. I hope I’ve done better than last time:

Orion by H J Shashank - 2

Getting a good photo on film is really a challenge, even with wide-field! It’s also exciting 😉

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