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Light Play and Hercules

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#1 rolandlinda3

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Posted 26 August 2009 - 02:59 PM

The Observation

By the time I reached the scope with my sketch pad the moon was only 15 degrees from the SSE horizon and heading right and down to a nearby tree line. Low altitude haze was already changing the apparent moon color to a light yellow. Putting Hercules at 250-power under these conditions could be construed as ridiculous, but the eye piece was convenient and I wanted to see the crater as much as I could. The light play around Hercules and Atlas are always fun (I recently went after both of them under poor conditions) but I wanted to grab just one on this outing. It was a race against time before the highest branches began interfering with the view. As I wrapped up, the moonset was a golden in the trees—a pleasant memory but the part I did not sketch.

Technical Sketch Data

Paper: 9x14 cut to 8.5x11 in final
Medium: Pastel (one white, one medium grey, one black)
Scanning: simple at 200dpi/24 bit color, no adjustments, reduced in size with Photoshop Elements

The Lesson

Light play is not only central to lunar observation, it is one of the first created things in Genesis, provides the core element of contrast with any degree of darkness, is the primary observable element of the stars that also mark time, and is the reference point for numerous parables and truths. No wonder, as a result, that one simple statement says so much in its context about Jesus Christ: “The true light that gives light…”. Reference: John 1:9

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#2 kraterkid

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Posted 26 August 2009 - 05:41 PM

Just a gorgeous sketch of this lunar strongman Roland! Great work on the shading, it looks to have so much depth if I got too close to the rim I'd fall in! Superb in every way.

#3 FJA

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Posted 26 August 2009 - 05:53 PM

Er...wow! Awesome sketch. I love the shadows. :bow:

#4 frank5817

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Posted 26 August 2009 - 05:56 PM

Roland,

Beautifully done. With the moon so low I probably would not have even taken a look much less made a sketch. Your a remarkable sketcher of the heavens. Bless you and yours. :bow: :rainbow:

Frank :)

#5 JayinUT

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Posted 26 August 2009 - 11:38 PM

Roland,

Fantastic in so many ways. Your capture of light and shadow is marvelous. Your description of sketching this and your race of time created an analogy to me that no matter who we are, as we race through life we need to let our light or talent shine as you have done here to benefit others. Again, wonderful sketch Roland and thanks for making me reflect as always.

#6 rolandlinda3

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Posted 27 August 2009 - 09:20 PM

Thank you for the comments. It was a good night to give thanks. Roland

#7 CarlosEH

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Posted 27 August 2009 - 09:59 PM

Roland,

An excellent observation of hercules. You have captured the crater wall and floor very nicely. I believe this to be one of your finest lunar renderings to date. Thank you for sharing it with us all.

Carlos

#8 rolandlinda3

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Posted 28 August 2009 - 11:36 AM

Thanks, Carlos. That is high praise. I am finding the advice from other members to start with larger paper is really helping, and it has helped recent efforts. Also, I used the grey pastel as a medium tone for wide backgrounds or as a moderate light-faced region when applied more heavily. This leaves the pure white as the emphasis. The result gives a much more 3-D effect. I learn slowly....but I am learning. God has been so gracious to me in this process since I started knowing nothing less than 3 years ago.

#9 Special Ed

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Posted 29 August 2009 - 04:03 PM

Roland,

Nice sketch of Hercules--your application of the different tones is well done. :) I think that working large is very important when using pastels or Conte' crayons.

I spent some quality time with Atlas and Hercules with the Moon low on the horizon at the Green Bank StarQuest last June. They are really fine targets for sketching and I learned a lot about using the crayons when I sketched them. Seeing your drawing makes me want to revisit them. :cool:

#10 rolandlinda3

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Posted 30 August 2009 - 10:03 AM

I agree, Michael--these craters could be revisited many times. As you know, different lighting conditions make the many aspects of these two crater appear quite different. I think one could spend many nights on the same two targets.

With larger paper, maybe I can break through the barrier of getting a better level of detail. The excellent work in the "book" shows detail I have never been able to achieve, but I think a lot of it comes from working too small to start with, since a small sketch tends to discourage application of very small detail (at least for me).






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