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Mars 2020 09 20

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#1 chrisrnuttall

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Posted 21 September 2020 - 03:13 PM

Hi all

 

Here's another sketch, this time it's....Mars...again!

 

Frustrated with the vagaries of the drifting banks of cloud we've had lately, I decided to chance a dodgy weather forecast on Sunday morning and get up at 3:20 for a Mars observation.

Initially I thought I had made a mistake as all I was getting were brief poor quality glimpses through gaps in an endless sheet of stratocumulus, but after 20 minutes (and just as I was wondering why I wasn't in bed) it all just vanished leaving me with a lovely clear sky and great seeing, pretty lucky!

 

Solis Lacus was well seen again, although I found Phasis faint and hard to see with any certainty.
Phaethontis on the West limb was bright.
Aurorae Sinus was nicely detailed, and I noted the pale region of Pyrrhae Reggio north of Mare Erythraeum.
Tharsis seemed brighter than the Solis Lacus region to its South.
Ganges was prominent, running North as far as Lunae Lacus and Nilokeras.
Ophir and Candor were very bright at mid disc.
The SPC appeared scrappy towards the East, and showed the same prominent protrusion I saw last week around 100°.
The NPH was again bright blueish-white.
The morning limb brightening was notably brighter and thicker around the equator, possibly extending a little towards Tharsis.

 

So it turns out I was quite lucky with the weather, being out of bed and at the telescope at exactly the same time as the clouds parted and the seeing settled down for about 40 minutes. No assistance from the Met Office!

Attached Thumbnails

  • Mars_2020-09-20_0300ut_CNuttall small.jpg

Edited by chrisrnuttall, 21 September 2020 - 03:18 PM.

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#2 Quinnipiac Monster

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Posted 21 September 2020 - 06:05 PM

Jaw-dropping. Do you sketch at the telescope and then colorize?



#3 chrisrnuttall

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Posted 22 September 2020 - 01:14 PM

Jaw-dropping. Do you sketch at the telescope and then colorize?

If I've got the luxury of time, for example observing Jupiter, Saturn or Mars when they are high in a clear evening sky, then I start and finish the entire drawing at the eyepiece in pastels on my artist's easel. I really enjoy working this way, it gives a real connection between the observation and the finished sketch, there's also the benefit of being able to check the colour reproduction live at the eyepiece, and there's no extra work to do indoors later. The few Jupiter drawings I have succeeded in making this year have been done entirely at the eyepiece.

 

However at the moment I am still observing Mars after getting out of bed early, and I haven't switched to evening observations just yet, though I will soon.

So, for Mars at the moment I am making a monochrome pencil sketch at the eyepiece, then making a coloured version indoors as soon as possible afterwards. I lay them over each other and flip the top one up and down to get the copy perfect, I also tend to take my previous drawings out with me to use for colour comparison at the eyepiece, making notes about any differences etc. In the next 2 or 3 weeks I will switch to evening sessions and then I will take the pastels outside for Mars. Hopefully you won't know the difference!

So no, there is no digital colouring in my drawings, I prefer the old fashioned analogue approach to drawing, getting hands-on with pigments and surfaces is far more enjoyable to me. Although it can be time-consuming I find it very rewarding and therapeutic. I also have spent most of every day working at a computer for the last 25 years, and I really don't want to spend more hours at one in my leisure time.

Each to their own though; there are plenty of folks on here who do digital colouring, and digital drawing and produce awesome results that way. Just not me wink.gif


Edited by chrisrnuttall, 22 September 2020 - 01:15 PM.

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#4 Sergey Stern

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Posted 22 September 2020 - 02:44 PM

Beautiful sketch!



#5 niteskystargazer

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Posted 22 September 2020 - 02:50 PM

Chris,

 

Very nice sketch of Mars (On 2020 09 20) smile.gif .

 

CS,KLU,

 

thanx.gif ,

 

Tom



#6 frank5817

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Posted 22 September 2020 - 08:18 PM

Chris,

 

Very fine looking Mars sketch and report.

 

Frank :)



#7 Quinnipiac Monster

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Posted 23 September 2020 - 06:35 AM

 

So, for Mars at the moment I am making a monochrome pencil sketch at the eyepiece, then making a coloured version indoors as soon as possible afterwards. I lay them over each other and flip the top one up and down to get the copy perfect, I also tend to take my previous drawings out with me to use for colour comparison at the eyepiece, making notes about any differences etc. In the next 2 or 3 weeks I will switch to evening sessions and then I will take the pastels outside for Mars. Hopefully you won't know the difference!

So no, there is no digital colouring in my drawings, I prefer the old fashioned analogue approach to drawing, getting hands-on with pigments and surfaces is far more enjoyable to me. Although it can be time-consuming I find it very rewarding and therapeutic. I also have spent most of every day working at a computer for the last 25 years, and I really don't want to spend more hours at one in my leisure time.

Each to their own though; there are plenty of folks on here who do digital colouring, and digital drawing and produce awesome results that way. Just not me wink.gif

I agree about the therapeutic merits of the visual observation (especially of planets), to me it's way better than the shrink. I finally resolved to get a camera but not sure I will use it that much. I already spend the rest of my day in front of a screen. 

 

One of the reasons I began experimenting with computer coloring is to avoid making a copy that may or may not be close to the origina, but it looks like you solved this issue. Pastels also seem to work much better for colors than pencils, so I could give them a try. When you use pastels live, do you start with a pencil sketch or just go with pastels? Can you keep the same control over very fine details, erase if needed etc. (I have no artistic training whatsoever, so pardon me if my question may sound naive).

 

Best,

 

Ivano


Edited by Quinnipiac Monster, 23 September 2020 - 06:38 AM.


#8 chrisrnuttall

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Posted 23 September 2020 - 03:08 PM

Ivano

 

I can't use pencil first (at least not on the velour paper I use anyway), the graphite laid down on the surface prevents the pastel pigment from adhering properly. 

The trick is to start drawing faintly, get as much of a guide layer down as I can, then keep on going over it building it up in layers.

Erasing isn't really possible with velour paper either (it might be with normal pastel paper), but because the velour can hold almost infinite amounts of pastel, I just go over any mistakes with some white then colour over them.

 

I find features easier to position on Jupiter and Saturn because they have a belt and zone system to guide you, but the maria on Mars are irregular and have taken quite a bit of learning.

 

On Pastels vs pencils, I started with coloured pencils and just could get a decent result, so I started googling and came across velour paper for pastels, so I ordered some and after a few tries I really got to like it.

Now I use a mixture of Soft pastel sticks for large areas of colour, and a range of pastel pencils for details, plus some big blending sumps for, well blending.... :)



#9 Quinnipiac Monster

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Posted 23 September 2020 - 08:22 PM

Thanks Chris, much appreciated!



#10 Warmvet

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Posted 24 September 2020 - 01:18 PM

Chris, enjoyed your sketch of Mars. It looks very realistic particularly some of the crisp edges and some more subtle. Feels like I am looking through an eyepiece with excellent conditions!

 

Cindy



#11 dweller25

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Posted 25 September 2020 - 10:32 AM

Very nice Chris waytogo.gif




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