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July13 CN Imaging/Sketching Contest Submissions!

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#1 Charlie Hein

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Posted 18 July 2013 - 05:13 AM

Welcome to the Cloudy Nights Imaging/Sketching Contest!

Over the years, we’ve noticed we have some exceptional talent in our forums, and we’ve decided that we would like to show it off. Each month our readers will choose an overall winner, and that winning image or sketch will be displayed on the front page of the Cloudy Nights website until a new winner is chosen.

How to enter:

Please visit our forums and submit an image/sketch in the appropriate forum, each forum will have a "sticky" thread called "Imaging Contest Submissions".

Images may be submitted to the contest threads in the following forums:

Beginning Imaging
Film Astrophotography
DSLR and Digital Camera Astro Imaging and Processing
CCD Imaging and Processing
Solar System Imaging and Processing

Moderators are listed by the forum name, and additionally their name or handle appears in green. Please contact them if you have any questions.

Each month, images or sketches (as applicable to the forum) will be submitted in each forum for users to vote on. The winners from each forum's semi-final poll will be entered in a site wide poll for our users to determine which image or sketch is the best of the group.

See the individual forums and moderators for additional details and questions.

Contest rules and prize awards are subject to change without notice.

Contest Rules: (revised 10/2011)

1. Images submitted in a particular forum must reflect the focus of that particular forum.

  • Entries in the DSLR forum must be images captured with a Digital SLR or digital camera
  • Entries in the CCD forum must have been captured with a dedicated astronomical CCD camera
  • Entries in the Film Astrophotograpy forum must have been captured with a film camera
  • Entries in the Solar System forum must be of objects contained within our solar system
  • Entries in the Sketching forum must be an image of a sketch
  • Entries in the Beginning Imaging can be of any astronomical subject as long as they are captured with a camera of some sort and do not violate any other rules.
2. In order to provide a level playing field and to encourage participation by novice imagers, entrants in the Beginning Imaging forum who win the semi-finals poll in the CN Imaging Contest a total of three (3) times - or who win in the finals regardless of the number of times they have won the semifinals - will have demonstrated sufficient proficiency at astrophotography to no longer be considered a "beginning imager". Such an imager will be considered to be a "graduate" of the Beginning Imaging Forum, and are encouraged to compete in the other imaging or sketching forums. The exception to this rule will be in the case of an entrant who wins the semi finals poll in Beginning Imaging as an uncontested entrant. An uncontested winner in the semi-finals will not have their win count toward their "graduation" as a beginning imager unless they also win the overall contest.

3. Entrants may submit an image for consideration in only one forum participating in the CN Imaging Contest. Entrants submitting images in more than one forum must choose a single forum to enter in or else all submissions from the entrant will be disqualified at the time of the creation of the semi finals polls.

4. All entries must be captured within the same season as the contest. For example, if the subject was Orion Nebula, than any photo captured during this particular winter (or period that it was visible) would qualify for the contest.

5. Please include the equipment used to take the image. Scope/Mount/Camera/Focal reducers/Barlows...whatever, as well as your name, the time / date and your location.

6. Entries must conform in all respects with the site wide image posting requirements. Entries that do not meet this criteria will be disqualified at the time of the semi final poll creation. It is the contestant's responsibility to ensure compliance with these requirements - although a moderator or administrator may alert a contestant to a possible problem in this area they are not bound to do so.

7. There will be a separate sticky thread for Contest entries. Please do not post comments in the entries thread its just for these wonderful images you all will be submitting.

8. You must be the owner or co-owner and sole operator of the equipment used to create the image/sketch. Doesn't matter what it is. 20" RC, ETX70, 2" Tasco or an 8" TMB. No images from club owned equipment will be allowed. No pay by the hour rent-a-scope images will be allowed.

9. Entries must represent the work of a single individual. You must setup and operate all equipment yourself, capture all exposures (or perform any sketching) yourself and process the resulting entry yourself. An exception to the set up requirement is granted if the participant is physically incapable of setting up their equipment due to disability.

10. A given user can only win in the finals once every 3 months.

11. Voting for the individual polls posted in the forums will commence no later than the 5th day of the month. Semi-Finals (forum) voting takes place from the 5th through the 8th, finalist pictures / poll will be posted no later than the 10th, and voting takes place from the 10th through the 15th. Finally, the winners image will be posted to the front page of the site as soon as possible after the conclusion of the poll.

#2 Jared


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Posted 19 July 2013 - 07:20 PM

Here is my entry for the month...

M57 captured on the night of July 6/7 from St Helena, CA
NELM 6.3 (21.4 MPSAS), Seeing 5/10 Pickering
PlaneWave 12.5" CDK OTA
Astro-Physics 900GTO mount
SBIG STXL-6303E camera
180 min H-alpha (20 minute subs), 45 min Lum (5 minute subs), 20 min RG&B (5 minutes subs)

Guided and captured in Maxim DL, calibrated and registered in CCDStack, post processed in Photoshop.

Attached Files


#3 avdhoeven



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Posted 20 July 2013 - 02:57 PM

After a week of imaging during several nights I could finally finish my Cygnus Wall image. This is the result in a Hubble palette with RGB stars...

Full resolution

Telescope: TEC-140
Camera: QSI-583
Mount: Skywatcher NEQ-6

H-alpha: 6 x 1800s (3nm Astrodon)
OIII: 9 x 1800s (3nm Astrodon)
SII: 3 x 1800s (3nm Astrodon)

RGB: 3 x (4 x 600 s Astrodon True RGB)

Total exposure time: 11 hours

Attached Files


#4 Oleg Bryzgalov

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Posted 21 July 2013 - 07:14 AM

Here's my picture for the contest.

Whirpool galaxy M51 in Canes Venatici

This photo was taken for four nights in May and June 2013 in Crimea and Khlepcha observatory near Kiev, Ukraine.
Equipment: reflector S&D 10" f/4.7, Mount WhiteSwan-180, camera QSI-583wsg, Tevevue Paracorr-2. Off-axis guidecamera Orion SSAG.
LRGB filter set Baader Planetarium.
L=20*900 sec. bin.1 RGB: 10*900 sec. each channel, bin.1 Total exposure 12.5 hours.
Processed Pixinsight 1.8, Fitstacker and Photoshop CS6.

Full resolution

Attached Files


#5 PhilG



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Posted 23 July 2013 - 05:09 PM

Here's my photo entry for the contest. My first completed image with automated backyard observatory!


NGC6960 Veil Nebula West - The Witch's Broom
14 hours each Ha and OIII in 30 minute subframes
75 minutes each RGB in 5 minute subframes for star color enhancement

Stellarvue SV127 Dual Fluoro APO
SBIG STT-8300M with Astrodon 3nm narrowband filters
Astro-Physics Mach1GTO mount
Captured with CCDSoft, TheSky6, automated with CCDCommander
Processed in CCDStack and Photoshop CS
June-July 2013

Phil G

Attached Files


#6 zytrahus



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Posted 29 July 2013 - 12:02 AM

Here's my entry: Antares to Rho Ophiuchi region

Telescope: Takahashi FSQ106EDX-III @ f/3.6
Camera: Moravian Instruments G3-11000
Filters: Astrodon LRGB
Mount: Losmandy G11
Exposures: ~10 hours (Luminance ~6 hours of 600s subs, RGB ~4 hours of 300s subs)

Full size on Flickr: http://www.flickr.co...N08/9369662292/
or on my blog: http://cooledpix.com...o-rho-ophiuchi/
Direct link: http://cooledpix.fil...ho-ophiuchi.jpg

Posted Image

#7 David Rosenthal

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Posted 31 July 2013 - 06:24 PM

Here is my entry. Shot from a Bortle Red Zone 20 minutes NW of New York City

Red = SII, 5nm, 9*1200 seconds, 1X1
Green = Ha, 5nm, 9*1200 seconds, 1X1
Blue = OIII, 3nm, 9*1200 seconds, 1X1

Borg/Pentax 125SD at f/4.6
AstroDon E-Series Gen II Filters (36mm unmounted)
SXVR-H18, SX Wheel, SX OAG, SX ExView Guider
Losmandy G-11, Gemini, Ovision RA Worm

Attached Files


#8 Charlie Hein

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Posted 02 August 2013 - 07:25 PM

I'm very sorry, I've been totally tied up at work and completely forgot to close submissions! If you posted after the deadline, you're in luck! I'm taking any entries that made it before I remembered to close the submissions!


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