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Deep space photography is not as hard as you think it is!

Deep space photography is not as hard as you think it is!


Click for larger image






Yes, to get some spectacular images of galaxies and nebula you do need a good telescope (or lens) and GEM (german equatorial mount) so that you can take longer exposures without elongating the stars and get a bit closer to the object you wish to photograph.

There are however several deep space objects that you can photograph without using specialized equipment.

In 1771 Charles Messier was kind enough to amass a list of 45 objects (the list now contains 110) in space that can be seen quite easily with the aid of binoculars or a small telescope.

Many of these objects can even be photographed using high ISO and the maximum length of exposure your chosen lens and camera will allow (without getting star trails). More on that here

The photograph on this page is a good example of what I'm talking about.

The photograph was originally intended to be a test of my new camera and its high ISO performance, but when I looked at the photograph, I had unknowingly captured the 11th deep space object on Charles Messier's list, known as the Wild Duck Cluster.

I know it's not as "Impressive" as some of my telescope shots, but it is pretty neat to be able to say to your friends "oh yeah, that's Messier _ _" and give them a description of it.

Next time the skies are dark and clear, get out there and give it a try!

The specs on this shot are as follows
Camera - Nikon D7000
ISO - 3200
Exposure - 15 seconds - 18mm - f4.5
Minimal Processing in LR


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