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Astrophotography and Sketching >> Sketching

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Undermidnight
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Reged: 05/25/04

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Re: Discussion: manipulate a sketch digitally or not? new [Re: ericj]
      #5438513 - 09/24/12 05:36 PM

I digitally manipulate my sketches as I need all the help I can get!!!

Seriously though, to me, it is about the event itself. Sketching is such a direct link between the observer and the sky. A record if you will of my experience at the eyepiece. Even if the record is not very good.

Jason


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Matt Lindsey
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Reged: 06/06/08

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Re: Discussion: manipulate a sketch digitally or not? new [Re: maroubra_boy]
      #5438968 - 09/24/12 11:22 PM

Great discussion Alex. Lately, I'm trying to bear in mind that, for me, the goal of the sketch is to accurately reproduce what I saw at the eyepiece--not trying to impress someone else by digitally altering the sketch and removing every last imperfection. At some point it doesn't resemble a sketch anymore and looks too sterile. Like you, I've been playing around with photographing, instead of scanning, the sketch, and I'm appreciating it more. I rather like the realism of the grayish background. I enjoy looking back at those images and the imperfections; it brings back the feel of a cold winter night or a humid summer evening.

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AdirondackAstro
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Reged: 06/06/11

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Re: Discussion: manipulate a sketch digitally or not? new [Re: ericj]
      #5438979 - 09/24/12 11:32 PM

For the two sketches I have just posted of M39 and M52 all I did to them was round out the stars a bit and invert the image. I thought about adding the blue color to some stars, or the golden yellow in others, but I decided to just leave it as is. I do wish a bit of the brightness of the gathered stars that I got on my sketch turned out the right way after scanning, but it didn't. If I change it too much to show up in the scan then it wont look as good on paper. I tried doing the same affect post processing on the computer, but I just couldn't get it.

I say if you're just touching it up to make it look better, or even just coloring stars then that's fine in my book. Adding color to nebula or galaxies makes it become more than just a sketch at the eyepiece; more like artwork, and less like a visual sketch.


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Asbytec
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Re: Discussion: manipulate a sketch digitally or not? new [Re: ericj]
      #5439098 - 09/25/12 01:52 AM

"For me it is aboout faithfully representing what I have seen, and I can only do that with pencils and brushes, and not digital media."

Interesting topic, lot to get caught up on. But, initially I tend to agree the artist should use his medium to accurately display what he saw. Artists can certainly can and should do that. I am not an artist capable of the slightest whisk of a pastel nor even accurately sketching the phase of Mars. But, I can see mare and take notes.

For me, the problem I run into is wanting to share what took many minutes of patients and a moment of superb seeing to tease out. And I do not want to make it that hard for you to see it. So, that might require making the contrast or the color a bit more bold and easier to display in a digital media format. I could not imagine someone "patiently observing" a sketch waiting for some faint detail to spring forth. Chances are, it will not...you're not at the eyepiece viewing the real thing in variable seeing.

I use computer media because I do not have a scanner, it allows me to get the sketch up as soon as it's done. Like many others, I do work off a pencil sketch with plenty of notes. For example, over 30 minutes, I might notice a soft festoon that is not always visible. And I want to share that view. Should I share the times it was not, or sketch it? So, it get's sketched and noted then added to the final. And, in some sense, sketches are composites of an observation done over time, really not unlike an image. "To sketch is to see," indeed. It's a line I hope not to cross...often.

Another problem is (for digital, and for me) is getting the colors just exactly right in terms of softness and accurately portrayed. One can imagine with billions of colors to choose from, that can be a daunting task. "Na, a tad more brownish...eh, yea, that seems pretty close." But, it't generally the best I can do in the medium of choice.

As long as the artist is true to the subject observed, a little bolder color or contrast does not change the observation. It makes it easier to share it, especially since it is all digitized anyway and someone's monitor settings might not accurately display it. I learned this lesson when a scanned sketch was too light for some viewers, so it had to be darkened, er, enhanced to share it.

Quote:

Sketching is such a direct link between the observer and the sky. A record if you will of my experience at the eyepiece.




Exactly, that's the wonderful experience we share with others! "Jupiter is just awesome, man, I saw oval BA!" (I have not yet, or I would have sketched it and probably represented it so you can too. )


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Diabolo
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Reged: 06/28/11

Re: Discussion: manipulate a sketch digitally or not? new [Re: ericj]
      #5443461 - 09/27/12 12:47 PM

An observer I know draw as accurately as he can on a paper and redraw with a photoshop like program in order to have a view as close as possible to the eyepiece view. At first, it was a surprise, but to be honest, like that a lot. Some links to see those drawings :

Nebula

Stars

Galaxies

Jupiter

He observe thousands of object with a 12" and now use a 20" for those computer drawings.


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