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Mars Sketches from the 1930's

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#1 BillP


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Posted 05 March 2010 - 04:19 PM

While PMing back and forth with a fellow Sketching Forum member (Frank), he brought to my attention the British Astronomical Association's website. So while investigating their site, came across this report they did which includes sketches they found of Mars from way back in the 30's!! Look at bottom of 1st page. Makes me wonder where all our sketches will be in 80 years :question:

Mars in 2009–2010 - an interim report

#2 frank5817



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Posted 06 March 2010 - 02:37 AM


Impressive images and sketches at the Mars section of the BAA.

Frank :)

#3 S1mas


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Posted 06 March 2010 - 11:32 AM

Very interesting, I like that fact, that in this era of photo, people still sketch - you can see individuality of each in their works. Thanks for sharing Bill

#4 Kris.


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Posted 06 March 2010 - 12:28 PM

thanks for the link Bill, i like the syrtis major sketch with the canals :p

#5 CarlosEH



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Posted 07 March 2010 - 01:32 PM


I agree that it is very interesting to compare our own observations with those made by observers in the past. The BAA Mars observers of the 1930's were very talented as well as other observers of other nationalities. I aspire to be an observer as thorough as past observers.

A famous astronomer that I admire greatly was the Franco-Turkish astronomer Eugene Michel Antoniadi (1870-1944). Antoniaidi made some of the finest observations of Mars by any observer. He was able to disprove the canal observations made by Percival Lowell using instruments such as the Grande Lunette refractor of the Paris (Meudon) Observatory (although Lowell did much to advance planetary observation (e.g. observing sites, observing and imaging techniques, redshift). Antoniadi began his observing career using a modest 4.25-inch (10.8-cm) refractor and finishing it with the impressive Meudon Observatory 33-inch (83-cm) refractor. Richard McKim (BAA Mars Director) wrote an excellent article on Antoniadi (see below).

http://articles.adsa...000164.000.html (Part 1of the McKim article)
http://articles.adsa...JBAA..103..219M (Part 2)
http://www.uapress.a...mars/chap09.htm (section of excellent book on Mars by William Sheehan concerning the observations of Antoniadi)

Thank you for pointing out these interesting observations.


#6 Tommy5



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Posted 07 March 2010 - 08:06 PM

Cool sketches, of course the canals and the sharp angled albedo features don't actaully exist on the planet, nowadays we have outstanding webcam photos even from amatuers that show how mars and jupiter really look, when we sketch we know what the planets are supposed to look like and that is what we "see" some folks from the old days sonmetimes draw realistic sketches bt many are kind of fanciful as that is what they expected to see,interesting stuff.Of course webcam photos ae processed to increase contrast to beyond what anyone would actually see above the planet so who knows. :question:

#7 BillP


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Posted 07 March 2010 - 10:28 PM

You bring out an interesting point. From my perspective, none of the imaging is even close to what the visual experience is. The abundance of post image processing brings out levels of details and contrast that one never sees at the eyepiece. The reality of the visual experience, IMO, lies someplace between the sketched rendering and the imaged rendering (yes, to me the stacked and processed images are simply an imperfect rendering of what the eye sees, or actually something the eye perhaps may never see as the CCD chips are sensitive to a different range of wavelengths and to a different degree than the human eye so they are really imaging something the human eye could never perceive in the first place!).

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