East Coast Star Party May 2012

Moonrise Party

This weekend was the East Coast Star Party in Coinjock, NC. Marking my third ESCP, I had a list of objects to hunt for, but most notable was M51, the Whirlpool Galaxy, and also seeing the polar cap of Mars in my 10″ dob.

I prepared for a weekend of dark skies by renting the Sigma 14mm f/2.8 wide angle lens. I was pleased with the results, it is a fast, sharp lens with minimal distortion. On my full frame 5d Mark II a huge swath of sky was visible. I did attempt to stack some shots together of the Milky Way but they just didn’t turn out as well as the single shots. I used Photoshop CS5 to remove all of the power lines. It was easy and effective.

I came away with quite a few good Milky Way shots. Mark Ost and I went bug hunting again around the campground and found quite a few spiders. Great weekend of conversation and photography, as all of the ESCP gatherings tend to be.


Click a photo for higher resolution viewing.

ISO 3200, f/2.8, 30 seconds

Self portrait.  I was blocking the moon in the exposure.

ISO 1600, f/2.8, 30 seconds.

 On to the spiders. All of these were taken with My 5d Mark II, Canon Mp-e 65 macro lens, and the Canon mt-24 ex twin flash light. The diffusers I built are working wonderfully, I’m getting close to daylight.

2 thoughts on “East Coast Star Party May 2012

  1. Nice photos of the “Spider Nebula”. In your “self-portrait”, what is that wedge to the middle right of the photo? It almost looks like a crescent moon.

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