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Leonid Meteor Shower sketch

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#1 kraterkid

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Posted 18 November 2009 - 02:16 PM

The Leonids put on a spectacular display in the early morning hours of November 17th as seen from from Jacumba, California. Around 1:30 to 4:30 am PDT, we were treated to a barrage of meteors, from bright little spikes of light to radiant bolides that streaked halfway across the starry skies leaving long smoke trains that lingered in the air and then dissipated. The stream was sporadic however, and we noted several five to ten minute intervals with small counts breaking the 100-200 meteors per hour rate that seemed a good approximation to the average observed. I was certain that the rate was close to the 500/hr in periods between 3:30 am and 4:30 am predicted by some. Jacumba has very few bright street lights currently and the zodiacal light shone so brightly it was almost distracting. I decided to sketch the scene, and after finishing the foreground ridge on the eastern side of my property and the position of Leo on the horizon, I began to record the trajectory and brightness of the meteors that fell within the field of view of my sketch during the interval between 1:45 am and 3:15 am PDT. You'll note that Leo would have risen about 25 degrees higher off the horizon during the sketch session, so the drawing does not accurately reflect that movement. Despite the restricted field of view, you can see that I was able to record a nice variety of Leonids during the hour and a half period. In the future, I've decided to try sketching one hour intervals with larger fov's, that way I can record hourly count variations.

I hope most of you had clear weather and were able to see this awesome event, it's one that will remain in my memory as the best I've ever witnessed.


Sketch details:
Subject: The 2009 Leonid Meteor Shower
Date: 11-17-09 Time: 1:30 to 3:15 am PDT Location: Jacumba, California
Naked eye sketch
Media: Conte' Crayon and dry pastels on Strathmore 400 series black Artagain paper
Sketch size: 9" x 12"

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#2 CarlosEH

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Posted 18 November 2009 - 03:29 PM

Rich,

A wonderful observation and report of the Leonid Meteor Shower from your site. It must have been a sight to see those meteor trails in the sky. Thank you for sharing it with us all.

Carlos

#3 Jef De Wit

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Posted 18 November 2009 - 03:32 PM

Rich
I like the sketch. Nice way to show it to everyone who had to miss it.

#4 kraterkid

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Posted 18 November 2009 - 05:45 PM

Thanks so much Carlos and Jef! :D

I think I'll try this differently in the future, assuming we get the incredible alignment of a Moonless night and clear weather (not likely soon! :p ) to sketch meteor showers in sketches of 15 minute intervals and in Photoshop insert the foreground of the sketch. Also to use a larger FOV so that I am forced to constantly place the individual meteor trajectories. Yes, I know the whole thing can be done with a camera, but what's the fun in that! ;)

Thanks again!

#5 cpl43uk

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Posted 18 November 2009 - 06:42 PM

Cloudied out in Bristol (as it always seems to be with these things!) so your sketches are all I have seen of the meteors this year. Thanks for the posting!

#6 kraterkid

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Posted 18 November 2009 - 06:59 PM

I'm happy you could experience it Chris, albeit vicariously. The thing about this storm was the variable hourly counts and the addition of the Taurids and a fair amount of sporadics. The yellow ionization trails were a color treat but I decided to sketch monochrome to avoid confusion under red light. I really wish you had seen it, a very special event!

#7 frank5817

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Posted 18 November 2009 - 07:34 PM

Rich,

Your excitment comes through in your wonderful report and great sketch. :bow: :cool: :rainbow: I have not seen a good meteor shower in decades. Your sky looks real good to. Great post my friend. :bow:

Frank :)

#8 kraterkid

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Posted 18 November 2009 - 10:21 PM

Thanks Franlk! :D It was such an intense shower and given the good conditions, one that I will surely remember for the rest of my life. Funny that what we experienced was a half storm and not a full one. Some previous Leonids have had thousands of meteors per hour. Now that's a downpour! ;)

#9 nunciusaustralis

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Posted 18 November 2009 - 10:40 PM

Tnxs . Thats all i got from the shower. All cloudyhere. :cloudy: :cloudy: :cloudy:

#10 markseibold

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Posted 19 November 2009 - 03:44 AM

Rich

That is a great piece of artwork! :bow: :bow: :bow:
It appears as some of the 60's artful movie backdrop opening scenes or as if a backdrop for a live stage play.

I thought at first sight that it was a silhouette landscape of old windmills, like from a Van Gogh painting.

Mark

#11 Matthew Ota

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Posted 19 November 2009 - 06:36 AM

I bet it was not easy to commit each meteor trail to memory like that and render them in the dark.. here is a composite image I made using digital photography and Photoshop as my media:

Posted Image

#12 Special Ed

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Posted 19 November 2009 - 12:14 PM

Rich and Matthew,

Interesting idea and I would think difficult to render such transient events--you guys are thinking outside the box. :cool: Nice work!

#13 cpl43uk

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Posted 19 November 2009 - 06:33 PM

Arh Come on guys!! with the addition of colour you really know how to hit those of us with cloudly skies below the belt! :bawling: Seriously - interesting way of recording and it would rather make you focus on those sparks when you see them (thinking about how to record things always does add that extra bit of attention-span in my experience... Gret idea...

#14 JayinUT

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Posted 20 November 2009 - 09:37 PM

Rich and Matt,

Wonderful captures! I enjoy the observations and how that is reflected in each sketch.

#15 DC869

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Posted 21 November 2009 - 11:29 PM

This is so unique. I could just feel the "activity". Very nice.

#16 kraterkid

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Posted 24 November 2009 - 12:01 PM

Thanks so much Jess, Mark, Matt, Michael, Chris, Jay and DC869! :D

I feel very lucky that all the conditions lined up properly to capture this record of this great meteor shower. Happy to see that Matt and Mark were able to observe and render some of the brighter bolides.

#17 Jef De Wit

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Posted 24 November 2009 - 01:48 PM

Rich
Congratulations with your ASOD!






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