CLOUDY NIGHTS FORUM ARCHIVES
"Live Forums" can be found here: Live Forums


Astrophotography and Sketching >> Sketching

Pages: 1 | 2 | (show all)
WadeVC
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 12/02/05
Posts: 2834
Loc: Lodi, California,
Sketching at the EP....give it a try!!
      #1979940 - 11/12/07 03:36 PM

The Sketching forum has a vast amount of members who post sketches on a regular basis, and an even larger number of visitors who enjoy looking at the many sketches posted here. This post is for those who are frequent visitors but for one reason or another, have never tried sketching at the EP themselves.

Far too many folks are under the impression that they just can not sketch, or that their sketches aren’t good enough.
BALONEY!

Everyone, regardless of their skill level or talent can make a sketch at the EP, the biggest “talent” involved is simply learning to do so under low-lighting conditions (red light) while observing. Even this only takes a little time to learn.

So, you claim that you are no Michelangelo or van Gogh…and you don’t have to be. Sketching at the EP isn’t about your artistic ability; it is about your excitement and enjoyment of observing the many objects in the night sky. This forum isn’t limited nor was it intended for only those who are proficient at sketching, it is for everyone and anyone who enjoys observing and recording their observations in a concrete form.

Yes, it is true that there are many here that are extremely talented at sketching, but not a single one of these folks started out as proficiently as what they are now. They all had to practice and refine their sketching techniques to get to the level they are at now; and they continue to learn and improve with each and every sketch they make.

The sketching forum is not a talent search or a forum intended for only those who have learned to refine their sketching techniques, it is for anyone who enjoys replicating on paper (or the computer) what they see when observing.

I would also like to point out that the Sketching Forum is not a “Purest” forum. There are those who consider one type of art superior over another, which is a shame. It is these folks who have limited themselves to the joy and enjoyment of the many artistic endeavors of others. Traditional art (paper & pencil, pen & paper, chalk, oils, etc.) and digital art (computerized) are simply mediums of ones own choice, familiarity and comfort level. The actual finished product, regardless of your medium of choice, is still simply a personal expression of what one sees while sitting at the EP. No single medium, method or process is superior or better than another is when one is simply expressing his or her own personal observation(s) while at the EP.

So, what do you need to start? Here is a fairly comprehensive list:

1. Paper
2. Pencil
3. A red light (to preserve your dark adaptation)

Now that wasn’t too difficult, was it?

The next step is to actually put onto paper what you are looking at through the EP. The simplest objects to begin with are double stars. Two dots on a piece of paper. In most (but not all) cases, one dot will be larger than the other.

First draw a circle on the piece of paper to represent the EP.




Now, start with the primary (the larger of the two) first. Center it in your EP and draw a dot on your piece of paper.
There, your first sketch is already halfway done.




Next, draw the secondary (the smaller star). Simply try to place it in the proper position in relation to the first star that you drew. If the secondary star is northwest of the primary star, that is will you will want to place it.




Make note of the orientation. A simple way to do this is to simply watch and see what direction the object is moving in the EP. The direction that it is moving will always be West. North is simply counter-clockwise to the west.

Now provide any information you wish, such as the scope you used, the EP used and the time and date:




There, you are done and have completed your very first Astronomical Sketch. It wasn’t too difficult or time consuming. As a matter of fact, chances are you spent more time saying, “I can’t do that” and finding other excuses than it did to complete the sketch.

As you become more comfortable sketching, you can then add more detail(s) to your sketching such as background stars, color (if any), etc., etc…

Ask anyone who sketches and they will tell you the same thing: Sketching actually improves ones ability to see fainter and more detailed nuances of any object. Mostly due in part to the fact that while sketching, one spends more time observing the object they are sketching than they would by simply observing it and moving on to the next object.

So, now that you have run out of excuses, give it a try. It is a great way to create a record of your observations and more than that it is FUN!

I hope to see more folks give sketching at the EP a try and share their results with the rest of us.

--------------------


Orion XTi10 f/4.7
Orion XTi8 f/5.9
Meade NGC 70mm f/10
Orion UltraView 10x50 Wide-Angle Binoculars

My Sketch Gallery

My Astronomy Blog


A wise man can see more from the bottom of a well than a fool can from a mountain top.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
rd56
sage


Reged: 12/17/06
Posts: 412
Loc: Central New Jersey
Re: Sketching at the EP....give it a try!! new [Re: WadeVC]
      #1983856 - 11/14/07 01:54 AM

Wade, from someone who is graphically challenged I think you've done an excellent job at demystifying the sketching process and encouraging folks to try sketching at the eyepiece regardless of their "talent". I'm not very proficient at doing more than a rough sketch along with including as many descriptive notes/observations as I can. However, later using photoshop I can usually produce a passable representation and record of what I saw at the eyepiece.

By the way, have you considered posting this on the Beginners Forum? I bet a lot of newbies (myself included until very recently) are not aware of this aspect of the hobby or even the sketching forum itself. And for those of us who can't afford the equipment for astrophotography, sketching is a great way to create visual recordings of your observations.

--------------------
-Orion SkyQuest Intelliscope XT8
-Antares 8X50 RACI Finder
-Round Table Equatorial Platform
*Software*
-SkyChart (Cartes du Ciel)
-AstroPlanner
-Virtual Moon Atlas
Ron



E quindi uscimmo a riveder le stelle
(And so we came forth and once again beheld the stars)

Dante's Inferno


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
WadeVC
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 12/02/05
Posts: 2834
Loc: Lodi, California,
Re: Sketching at the EP....give it a try!! new [Re: rd56]
      #1984047 - 11/14/07 07:18 AM

Thank you for the kind words Ron.

I am trying awfuly hard to try and get others to become involved in sketching at the EP. I really doesn't matter what one's artistic skills are. It is just a very enjoyable and fun way to record ones observations.

I'm not too sure about posting something like this in the Beginners Forum...I am sure it would get moved right back here by one of the Moderators. But who knows, maybe I'll try to sneak it in.

Quote:

And for those of us who can't afford the equipment for astrophotography, sketching is a great way to create visual recordings of your observations.




You can say that again!!

--------------------


Orion XTi10 f/4.7
Orion XTi8 f/5.9
Meade NGC 70mm f/10
Orion UltraView 10x50 Wide-Angle Binoculars

My Sketch Gallery

My Astronomy Blog


A wise man can see more from the bottom of a well than a fool can from a mountain top.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
rd56
sage


Reged: 12/17/06
Posts: 412
Loc: Central New Jersey
Re: Sketching at the EP....give it a try!! new [Re: WadeVC]
      #1984753 - 11/14/07 01:47 PM

There are a lot of posts about astrophotography in the beginners forum with much concern expressed about equipment and cost. Don't see as how an introduction to sketching is any less of a beginner's topic of interest. Besides, folks in the sketching forum are probably already interested in sketching to some extent whereas many beginners may not even be aware of how easy it is to become involved.

Hey... Why not title your post "A cheap way to record what you see"

--------------------
-Orion SkyQuest Intelliscope XT8
-Antares 8X50 RACI Finder
-Round Table Equatorial Platform
*Software*
-SkyChart (Cartes du Ciel)
-AstroPlanner
-Virtual Moon Atlas
Ron



E quindi uscimmo a riveder le stelle
(And so we came forth and once again beheld the stars)

Dante's Inferno


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
WadeVC
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 12/02/05
Posts: 2834
Loc: Lodi, California,
Re: Sketching at the EP....give it a try!! new [Re: WadeVC]
      #1985577 - 11/14/07 07:07 PM

Ok, I have reposted this in the Beginners Forum...let's see if there is any interest or if it even stays there.

--------------------


Orion XTi10 f/4.7
Orion XTi8 f/5.9
Meade NGC 70mm f/10
Orion UltraView 10x50 Wide-Angle Binoculars

My Sketch Gallery

My Astronomy Blog


A wise man can see more from the bottom of a well than a fool can from a mountain top.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Sidewinder
member


Reged: 09/15/06
Posts: 596
Re: Sketching at the EP....give it a try!! new [Re: WadeVC]
      #1985881 - 11/14/07 09:06 PM

Hey Wade,
really nice article!
I think it's a good thing to encourage people to sketch at the eyepiece, after all it's a way of recording your observations that has a lot of tradition. And as has been mentioned often enough, the sketches don't have to be works of art (even though many here can be considered just that!).
And after all, it's always a cool thing to know that people are spending thousands of Dollars in photography equipment, whereas I just go and invest ten Bucks in a few sheets of paper and some pencils!:)

Sebastian

--------------------
teen


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
WadeVC
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 12/02/05
Posts: 2834
Loc: Lodi, California,
Re: Sketching at the EP....give it a try!! new [Re: Sidewinder]
      #1986244 - 11/15/07 12:04 AM

Quote:

And after all, it's always a cool thing to know that people are spending thousands of Dollars in photography equipment, whereas I just go and invest ten Bucks in a few sheets of paper and some pencils!:)




That is also one of the benefits of sketching at the EP Sebastian. Sure, we all enjoy looking at the many Astrophotos posted by others here; and many of us would love to venture into this aspect of the hobby. But for many of us, the cost(s) involved are just too demanding whereas, as you pointed out, a pencil and paper costs only a few dollars.

--------------------


Orion XTi10 f/4.7
Orion XTi8 f/5.9
Meade NGC 70mm f/10
Orion UltraView 10x50 Wide-Angle Binoculars

My Sketch Gallery

My Astronomy Blog


A wise man can see more from the bottom of a well than a fool can from a mountain top.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
rodelaet
Post Laureate


Reged: 04/28/06
Posts: 3185
Loc: 50°56' N - 4°58' E (Belgium)
Re: Sketching at the EP....give it a try!! new [Re: WadeVC]
      #1989851 - 11/16/07 04:29 PM

Well done, Wade! I'm sure that your post will generate a lot of interest in the beginners forum.

--------------------
Rony

'The Casual Sky Observer's Guide.'

My Astronomical Sketches

My Binocular Sketches

Callibrate your Monitor with this little strip.



Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
WadeVC
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 12/02/05
Posts: 2834
Loc: Lodi, California,
Re: Sketching at the EP....give it a try!! new [Re: rodelaet]
      #1996225 - 11/19/07 05:41 PM

Quote:

Well done, Wade! I'm sure that your post will generate a lot of interest in the beginners forum.




It has done just that Rony! So far a little over 270 hits on the thread, and I do believe we have a few new sketchers posting here as well.

--------------------


Orion XTi10 f/4.7
Orion XTi8 f/5.9
Meade NGC 70mm f/10
Orion UltraView 10x50 Wide-Angle Binoculars

My Sketch Gallery

My Astronomy Blog


A wise man can see more from the bottom of a well than a fool can from a mountain top.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
WadeVC
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 12/02/05
Posts: 2834
Loc: Lodi, California,
Re: Sketching at the EP....give it a try!! new [Re: WadeVC]
      #2143708 - 01/24/08 10:05 PM

As I have noticed a few new people in the Sketching Forum as of late, I thought it would be a good time to bring this thread back up front.

--------------------


Orion XTi10 f/4.7
Orion XTi8 f/5.9
Meade NGC 70mm f/10
Orion UltraView 10x50 Wide-Angle Binoculars

My Sketch Gallery

My Astronomy Blog


A wise man can see more from the bottom of a well than a fool can from a mountain top.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
frank5817
Postmaster


Reged: 06/13/06
Posts: 7212
Loc: Illinois
Re: Sketching at the EP....give it a try!! new [Re: WadeVC]
      #2145403 - 01/25/08 05:16 PM

Wade,

Well Done!

Frank

--------------------
My Gallery


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
pike_fly
sage


Reged: 10/10/07
Posts: 365
Loc: Roxborough Park, Colorado
Re: Sketching at the EP....give it a try!! new [Re: frank5817]
      #2146649 - 01/26/08 09:35 AM

For the beginner the question may be "why"? Why should I sketch?

I can only answer this question from personal experience, but I'd love to hear others (I think this was a thread once). Until I started sketching I only sat at the eyepiece for several minutes at a time - what I thought was a long time - observing a single object. Sketching forces you to look at an onject much closer and with greater detail. You notice things that you could never seein a couple of minutes and things that you never really looked for. I think it makes astronomy a lot more enjoyable. In the wordsof Paul Simon, "Slow down, you're moving to fast...".

The down side is it's been really windy here the past month. Although the skies are clear, I can't keep the paper in a position to sketch (no matter how many binder clips I use) and now I feel like I'm missing out on something. I think sketching becomes an addiction. But that's just me.

Thanks again Wade.

--------------------
Lee

10" Zhumell Dobsonian
Class 4 Bortle Scale Backyard Site

View Lee's Gallery


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
WadeVC
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 12/02/05
Posts: 2834
Loc: Lodi, California,
Re: Sketching at the EP....give it a try!! new [Re: pike_fly]
      #2147019 - 01/26/08 12:38 PM

Quote:

I think sketching becomes an addiction. But that's just me.




You can put me down for that category as well. I most definietly find sketching my observations very addicting indeed. Although I don't sketch each and every object I look at, I somehow feel that my observing sessions just aren't complete if I don't sketch at least one object per observing session. It can be something as simple as a double star, but to put onto paper what I observe is, to me, much more satisfying than a lengthy entry in my Astronomy Blog.

As to why I sketch (or like to sketch), I find that sketcing gives me an opportunity to instantly see, visually, my past observations; which has more impact and meaning than my journals ever could.

I also find that sketching has most certainly "trained" me to see the finer and more detailed nuances of certain objects I observe(Jeremy hinted upon this in his recent post). Until I started to sketch at the EP, I, like many, simply gazed at an object for a minute or two and moved on to the next. I never realized just how much I was missing by not spending the time to truely observe an object for a lengthy period of time until I started sketching.

--------------------


Orion XTi10 f/4.7
Orion XTi8 f/5.9
Meade NGC 70mm f/10
Orion UltraView 10x50 Wide-Angle Binoculars

My Sketch Gallery

My Astronomy Blog


A wise man can see more from the bottom of a well than a fool can from a mountain top.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
starquake
sage


Reged: 02/02/08
Posts: 254
Loc: Nádasdladány
Re: Sketching at the EP....give it a try!! new [Re: WadeVC]
      #2162577 - 02/02/08 10:38 AM

Hi, could you please take a look at my first sketches at the link below and give some feedback (bad or good)? I've just started to draw objects last week, and I had only a small chance to sketch because of the terrible weather these days. I know that some of my sketches are horrible (eg m42-43, that I've drawn on an especially bad day with a very low limiting magnitude), but I hope to get better at it.

The images I've drawn using ordinary HB pencils on white paper, then scanned/resized and inverted for a real-life look. They are not altered digitally otherwise. If you hoover over the image, it will change to the reverted look. Higher resolution images are also available.

(The white/black lines on the right of the image are the result of a bad conversion that I've just noticed today, but I'm not at the computer that has the sources now.)

At the moment there's no FOV, magnification, seeing, hmg, and other observation details available (of course I have everything documented but the info is not on the web yet).

Images were drawn using a 12" Newt on Dobsonian mounting, using various wide field (cca. 68degrees) eyepieces with magnifications from 45x to 167x.

And the link is: http://magictron.com/x

Many thanks in advance, and sorry for my English.

starquake


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
THEPLOUGH
ELEVEN Grandchildren; FIVE Ducklings


Reged: 01/11/08
Posts: 16473
Loc: Carlisle, Cumbria, ENGLAND
Re: Sketching at the EP....give it a try!! new [Re: starquake]
      #2162594 - 02/02/08 10:51 AM

They are excellent. I love the nebula in particular..
( THEIR IS NO NEED TOO APOLOGISE FOR YOUR ENGLISH.)

Geoff..--

--------------------
Geoff...




Nexstar 8SE + bits and pieces
------------------------------


..... THE PERFECT DAY .....
==================================
...GO TO BED WITH A DREAM...
...WAKE UP WITH A PURPOSE...





-----------------------------




Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Jeremy Perez
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 08/12/04
Posts: 2125
Loc: Flagstaff, Arizona, USA
Re: Sketching at the EP....give it a try!! new [Re: THEPLOUGH]
      #2162600 - 02/02/08 10:57 AM

Ferenc, wow, your sketches are great--lots of detail, and careful crafting obviously went into them. (To anyone who views his site, be sure to click the "true color" or "inverted" links to see the images at full size.) Keep up the great work!

--------------------

Orion SVP 6LT (6" f/8 Newt) || Orion XT8 (8" f/5.9 Dob) || 15x70 Oberwerk Binoculars || Coronado PST
The Belt Of Venus || Sketch Gallery || Sketching Resources || Drawn to the Universe Column


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
xfile101
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 12/08/07
Posts: 769
Loc: Ocean Gate, NJ
Re: Sketching at the EP....give it a try!! new [Re: Jeremy Perez]
      #2162997 - 02/02/08 02:10 PM

Quote:

I somehow feel that my observing sessions just aren't complete if I don't sketch at least one object per observing session.




Although new to the sketching side of things I have to agree. It's also a way to record visually, it's much better and/or easier to "show" somebody what you saw than tell then, it get's your point across. I use my sketches as my background on my computer at work (about 1 a week) and I always get asked about the subject in question and I enjoy explaining how came about drawing the image. For the most part, people seem interested when I explain. The second reason I like to sketch, it's not as expensive as AP and the learning curve is a whole lot LESS than AP, although, there is a learning curve to sketching I don't think is is no where near the learning curve to AP, I'm lucky if I get a good pic of the moon out of 10 taken

--------------------
Orion XT8I
Celestron 114EQ Firstscope
Meade 70mm
Astroscan



Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
starquake
sage


Reged: 02/02/08
Posts: 254
Loc: Nádasdladány
Re: Sketching at the EP....give it a try!! new [Re: xfile101]
      #2164633 - 02/03/08 09:13 AM

Thanks for your compliments! Well yes, the most difficult sofar was sketching ngc1807 + ngc1817, took me more than an hour, restarted from scratch once, decided to abandon at least three times, but at last I finished the sketch. It was especially dificult, because lots of the stars on that sketch were sometimes apparent only with averted vision, sometimes even directly. The limiting magnitude was around 14m that night (31.01.) and at that point of the sky, but I can only give raw estimates as the astronomy software I'm using got a database of stars only up to 12mags or so.

starquake

--------------------
Ferenc Lovró

{ The observer | The scopes | The sketches }


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Sol Robbins
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 12/01/03
Posts: 1985
Re: Sketching at the EP....give it a try!! new [Re: starquake]
      #2165170 - 02/03/08 12:59 PM

Starquake,

Excellent folio of sketches. Your web site was a real treat for me.

Thanks,

--------------------
S.R.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Erix
Toad Lily


Reged: 12/25/04
Posts: 24022
Loc: Texas, USA
Re: Sketching at the EP....give it a try!! new [Re: Sol Robbins]
      #2166820 - 02/04/08 05:35 AM

Starquake, welcome to CN!

Your sketches are wonderful and your starfields were very rich.

--------------------
Erika
Automatic doors make me feel like a Jedi.

Zhumell 16", 10" LX200 Classic,Celestron 102 XLT, ETX70-AT, DS Maxscope 60mm, AT6RC
PCW Memorial Observatory


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Pages: 1 | 2 | (show all)


Extra information
0 registered and 3 anonymous users are browsing this forum.

Moderator:  Charlie Hein, cildarith 

Print Thread

Forum Permissions
      You cannot start new topics
      You cannot reply to topics
      HTML is disabled
      UBBCode is enabled


Thread views: 2856

Jump to

CN Forums Home



Cloudy Nights Sponsor: Astronomics