Welcome! My first pages were strictly 'about me' pages hosted on USC's <ASTRO.PHYSICS.SC.EDU> server. After I left USC in 1999, I updated and moved my pages to a geocities site. But they were still 'about me.' Since I also like to organize, I decided it was time for a major overhaul of my pages and this time they would have a purpose other than to strictly brag about me! But what purpose? I love astronomy so that was my guide! But it's taken me alot longer to put together the site I had envisioned. And to be honest, there are already many other wonderful sites that cover the same stuff I was planning to. So, this is starting to turn into 'another' amateur astrophoto site, but hopefully, it'll still catch your attention!
Define 'Amateur Astronomy'
'Amateur Astronomy' is a huge field! There are many sites that give a good overview of astronomy for those just starting out. What I hope to do differently is to present material for amateurs that have advanced past the 'newbie' stage - ie, "I've seen the Messiers. What else is there to see?" Although I will give information about the various observing programs, astronomy is not just about observing! Amateur astronomers can also contribute scientifically useful observations of all sorts. So I will also talk about how to get started in these advanced projects.
'Astrophotography' is the combination of astronomy, the study of everything beyond the Earth's atmosphere, and photography, from the Greek 'light drawing.' Thus astrophotography is simply the photography of astronomical objects.
Although there are several technical aspects to be considered, most images are also works of art, not just photos! Astrophotography is also a means of sharing or showing off successful observations!
* The information presented on these pages is the result of my own research and experience. Whereas I will be as factual as possible, there will be anecdotal details mixed in. All information should be considered as being my opinion. These pages assume that basic astronomy and photography principles and terminology are at least vaguely familiar to the reader.
* Please note that photographing and observing the sun can be extremely hazardous to your eyes. Under certain conditions, it is absolutely imperative that proper solar filters be used when photographing or even observing the sun! Most of us have 'safely' observed a sunset, but that depends on the clarity of the atmosphere. A hazy evening will filter more light than a crystal clear evening, but that doesn't mean that the sunlight is filtered enough to safely observe. Always use caution when observing or photographing the sun!
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