Jupiter - August 07 Monthly Target
Posted 21 August 2007 - 12:06 PM
You are encouraged to supply any or all of the following for observing/sketching Jupiter:
- tips on how to observe that object, filters or other equipment used
- media tried and tested for your renderings
- mini tutorial with an explanation and or/photos on how you did created the observation sketch
- link to any reports involved with the target, after all, these are observation sketches and links to reports will help all of us learn the object better as well as learn what to look for and how to optimize your viewing/sketching session
- or finally, just the sketch itself so we can all see each other's works in progress
As Jupiter has been very hot these past few months, most of us have fresh Jupes on hand. We don't have much more time with the big guy before it's time to move over for Mars. So I'd like to take advantage of it for us to share our Jupiter sketches with any info you'd like to give along with it.
Past monthly targets/tutorials and tips threads
Posted 21 August 2007 - 12:45 PM
But then after seeing some of the amazing sketches here the past few years, I began to look harder for the details because it was obvious I was missing a lot. Here are a few of my attempts starting with one that I did last year.
Looking back on it, I over did the contrast from my charcoal. But that's not necessarily a bad thing. It brings out the details more vividly for me to view later. The drawback is that in real life, it was much more subtle and therefore not the avenue I normally try to take with my sketches.
But overall, it was as accurate as I was capable of doing as you can see by the image my husband took with the same scope that same night after I was finished with my session.
I lucked out by the great conditions and was able to bring the magnification up to about 312x with the LX200 and an 8mm TeleVue Plossl. This was in town and although the humidity could have been better, the seeing and transparency were above average. Having the transparency so good regardless of the high humidity was a pocket of good luck that night.
I tried to tease out more detail with a blue filter from Orion.
The tip that seems to work for me with a lot of my views for pulling out the real subtle shadings are to defocus my eyes while adding them. It kind of acts like averted vision in the dark views while DSO hunting. Then I focus my eyes again for the sharper features.
To the left is my sketch (obviously :o ) and to the right is Paul's image a little later.
It's been long enough since that sketch that I really can't remember how I proceeded with the actual markings, but I do recall a few tips that Sol gave regarding how he did it.
Posted 21 August 2007 - 12:53 PM
OMG, talk about a most excellent eyepiece, I've heard nothing but good things about zoom eyepieces. And after I started using the one that Paul bought used for me this year, I have to admit this is a must have for those of you that go through two or three eyepieces in a session, especially is seeing is playing up on you.
Getting back to my sketch, the main colors I saw that night were shades of salmon/orange/yellow and a smokey grayish blue color.
I find that I add the main bands first and then the polar shading, and then go from there.
All of the Jupiters are done on Rite in the Rain 4-7 inch paper.
In this instance, the pencils were Prang.
Posted 21 August 2007 - 01:06 PM
I created a special size template for my printer that stores the custom settings for my Rite in the Rain paper.
Here two more Jupiter sketches done recently. I didn't have any luck with the short supply of filters that I have on hand. Please if anyone has tips on filters for me to try, I'll put it on my Christmas wishlist for Santa Paul to take into consideration for me for next year.
These were done with the 80mm as well. You can see the difference in details, even though slightly, between the two times that same night and the sky conditions.
I use dew buster strips as most nights the moisture level is so high around here that if you don't get the hay put up before 6pm, you might as well hold off until the next day because the hay will be dripping. Well, the scopes are no different. That's why I use Rite in the Rain at night. It can be a little harder to get used to, but it's amazingly durable in damp conditions.
BTW, the blue sliver on the left hand limb in the color Jupiter sketch was by accident. I inadvertently sketched in the CA from my scope. :o
Posted 21 August 2007 - 01:17 PM
You can see the limb lightening pretty good on this one. But my what a little bit of less than good transparency can do to the views.
The last three were done with a #2 pencil. The shine of graphite is very difficult for me to deal with under dark conditions with a little dim headlamp hanging from my eyepiece holder to illuminate my sketch. I tried all different angles and finally had to hold the light at various angles with one hand while sketching with the other. It gets frustrating.
Advantages of the pencil for me was the fact that it was easy to create a soft appearance of the Jupiter view I had. And I didn't have to go back and forth between my charcoal to the pencil for writing in my notes.
Disadvantages were shine/glare on my paper and I can see pencils being a problem for me to quickly produce large scale drawings.
I would like to add that charcoal can be very dynamic, but it is also easy and accomplishable (ok, so maybe that's not a real word, but it fits) to create very soft looks with it too. It's all in what you're used to and what feels comfortable. I still prefer my charcoal, but when sketching something as small as Jupiter with the template being so small and the disk being so light to my eye, a pencil does a fine job....except for the danged glare.
What's the trick around that? Anybody know?
Posted 21 August 2007 - 02:20 PM
a pencil does a fine job....except for the danged glare. What's the trick around that? Anybody know?
I usually only get the glare from graphite when I'm drawing the dark shadows in lunar sketches. I use a cheap little flashlight with an incandescent bulb and a red lens. It's not as bright as the newer LED flashlights, so that could be why I don't get much of a glare.
I've only done one Jupiter sketch this August. I'm afraid I don't have much to offer for a tutorial here, but this is how I went about drawing the King. I started by placing an eyepiece cap in the center of my sketch pad (Strathmore Windpower Sketch), and tracing around it with my .5mm 2HB pencil. Next I began to sketch in the darkest bands (I'm not up to speed on the names or abbreviations, so forgive my descriptions), that I could see. Io's shadow happened to be right in between them, so I drew that in next. Then I went for the Great Red Spot and the band that's right above it (beneath it in the sketch). After that I filled in the lighter bands and the poles. In post processing, I added the color and black background with my photo editing software, MGI Photosuite III (I think they make a Photosuite VIII these days). And that's all there was to it.
This sketch was done without the use of filters. I have an Orion Variable Polarizing Filter on order and I will make another attempt at Jupiter when it arrives (and post it here).
Posted 21 August 2007 - 02:41 PM
I do use several layers of tape on my lamps to bring down the glow, especially for DSO work, but I still get a glare. And in fact I have more problems with graphite in red light even. For plants I've found I have to use a very soft pale blue light or very soft white light.
How does a person add color afterwards with a program such as Photoshop? I can play around with clicking on the selection tool and then adding color, but is there an easier way without having to outline all the little areas you want colorized?
Posted 21 August 2007 - 03:13 PM
Hmmm....maybe I'm just so used to the glare that I only notice it when I'm drawing really dark lines and shapes.
As for adding color, my particular (and ancient) software has an "effects brush" with a "colorize" option. You can adjust the color and opacity of the brush, and then just paint over the area that you want to add color. I don't know anything about Photoshop though, so this info is probably useless to you... sorry!
Posted 21 August 2007 - 09:50 PM
I view Jupiter through Green filters. For me they work best in that they darken the darker blue and red features. They also improve visibility of of bright spots especially in zones.
Most filter sets or suplliers offer the Wratten 58 dark green which is a "tricolor". Anyway this one doesn't really work that well for me.
My first choices would be either the Wratten 11 yellow-green or better yet, the Wratten 56 medium green. The 56 is hard to find. but Burgess Optical has them at about $7 each.
I recently got a Rigel adjustable brightness flashlight. It has either red or white light. Best part is that it casts a very even illumination without qany dark or bright spots. Its a bit expensive for a flashlight and operates on a 9 volt, (which I don't like). 9 volt batteries die fast when its cold. I just drape the light's lanyard around the focuser leaving the light to hang over my drawing surface.
Posted 22 August 2007 - 07:57 AM
Jason, I think I can do that, I just never knew where to look Thanks!
Sol, will a 9 volt battery last a night's worth of observing in the cold? Of course, the light wouldn't be on the whole time. They make rechargeable 9 volt batteries, so if the charge would hold during the night, I'd be tempted to look into it.
Thanks for the info on the filters!
Posted 23 August 2007 - 12:17 PM
I thought I'd put together a little description of the way I went about creating my color pastel sketch of Jupiter. Initially I copied Sol Robbins' Jupiter template onto my hard drive. I then enlarged this in Photoshop to fit the size (9" x 12") of the Strathmore Artagain black paper used. Next, I printed the enlarged template onto computer paper and traced the outline of the disk with white Conte' Crayon. Flipping the outlined paper over, I laid it on the black paper, positioning it carefully before burnishing the back of the computer paper with a spoon. This was very easy because the outline of the disk could be seen from the backside as I rubbed the spoon around the circumference. Removing the computer paper, the white outline of the disk of Jupiter was now transferred to the black paper. I was now prepared to do my sketch at the eyepiece. I gathered together several colored Conte' pastel pencils, shades ranging from light gray to yellows, browns and reds, a couple of green umbers and even a blue. White Conte' Crayon was used to blend and lighten the various bands observed. The colors were pretty much mixed in place on the sketch. The limb darkening was done by finger blending. I placed the finished sketch in a cardboard box and sprayed the fixative horizontally across the open box. This allowed the fixative droplets to rain down gently on the sketch, preventing the pastels from being blown off the paper surface from the direct blast of the spray can.
Posted 01 September 2007 - 10:08 AM
I like the tip for the fixative. I normally hold the can pointed away from the sketch when I first start spraying and then swiftly swipe the fixative back and forth. This also seems to help because if I start spraying when the can is held directly in front of the sketch, that's when the big droplets of fixative appear.