A Guide to Capturing the CosmosBook - 2008
At first glance, the challenge of astrophotography may appear daunting. But not only are spectacular results possible, they are easy to learn with the step-by-step instructions provided in Stephan Seip's Digital Astrophotography: A Guide to Capturing the Cosmos . Today, amateurs can produce images that only twenty years ago a large professional observatory would have been proud of; and this book shows you how.
Learn how to:Set up your camera for optimum results Focus your camera for razor-sharp images Take beautiful night shots with a simple compact digital camera, a tripod, and a telescope Use a DSLR camera to shoot the Sun, Moon, stars, star clusters, and nebulae through your telescope Get brilliant images of planets with a Webcam Capture remote galaxies with a charge-coupled device (CCD) camera just like a pro
Also included are lessons on the processing that is done in the "studio" after your shoot, including how to:Shoot RAW format images and improve them with calibration frames Take short exposures of faint deep-sky objects and combine them into a longer exposure Perform brightness, contrast, and color correction Make corrections to correct for vignetting and uneven field illumination Process your images for stunning results
Equipment requirements for astrophotography range from nothing but a simple camera and tripod to a multi-thousand dollar computer controlled telescope equipped with a CCD auto-guider and separate guide-scope. Researching the best equipment for your needs is a task in itself. Seip helps you to sort out which cameras are best for the various celestial objects, what to look for when buying a camera, and what accessories you really need.
The rewards of this fascinating hobby, as the author says, "Grants you unforgettable hours under the night sky; it allows you to produce aesthetically rewarding and lasting results. Astrophotography is a love-match between physics, photography, art, and digital image processing. It is exciting!"