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There are two basic methods of recording astronomical images seen through the eyepiece of a telescope. Photography (these days, usually digital imaging with a CCD camera) is one, the other is sketching.
Astronomical sketching and drawing has a long and esteemed history. Many astronomers believe it is still unrivalled for recording and illustrating transient phenomena (such as TLPs) or for taking advantage of the fleeting moments of extreme clarity that result from the turbulent atmosphere through which Earth-based astronomers carry out all their observing.
Unfortunately, astronomical sketching and drawing is seldom taught as such, and is regarded by many amateur astronomers as the province of a talented few. This is not the case - the necessary techniques can be taught, just as portraiture and still-life drawing can be (and is) taught.
Introduction.- Sketching the Moon.- Sketching the Sun.- Sketching Comets.- Sketching the Planets.- Sketching Nebulae.- Sketching Star Clusters.- Sketching Planetary Nebulae.-Sketching Galaxies.- Record keeping.- Index.
Richard Handy, principally noted for his lunar sketchwork, studied Art and Astrophysics at the University of California Santa Cruz. He currently runs a small Internet based astronomy company and spends his cloudless evenings sketching the Moon and other celestial objects from his home in San Diego, California. Rich very actively supports observational sketching and is a regular, enthusiastic contributor and supporter of a number of online astronomy forums. David Moody has been observing the skies since age 11. During that time, he also somehow managed to become a CPA, teach at a university for a few years, and work as a magazine editor for several years. He has given several lectures and talks on subjects ranging from emerging stars to emerging business technologies. He is s past member of the Pontchartrain Astronomical Society and a current member of the Texas Astronomical Society and can be found every year at the Texas Star Party trying to observe galaxies with averted imagination. Jeremy Perez has worked as a graphic artist since 1990. He maintains a web site that focuses on astronomical sketching as a means of recording visual observations and has had some of his sketches published in Sky and Telescope Magazine. He is a member of the Astronomical League, and currently serves as vice president of the Coconino Astronomical Society. Erika Rix resides in Zanesville, Ohio where she owns a small business. She is a member of the Columbus Astronomical Society and volunteers her time as a moderator for the Cloudy Nights Telescope Reviews forum. Despite having only been active as an amateur astronomer for a little over a couple of years, her lunar and solar studies progressed quickly through observational sketching and her work has been published on various Internet sites. Sol Robbins has been a professional gallery artist and magazine illustrator since the late 1970's. He has been an avid observer for over 40 years. His sketches of the planets have appeared in magazines, books and used in scientific research publications.
From the reviews: "Sketching is the best way to train the eye for visual observation and it enhances an observer's enjoyment of the night sky. This book is aimed at those who would like to discover and develop sketching techniques. The five experienced authors describe their areas of specialty, with chapters on sketching the Moon, comets, the Sun, planets, star clusters, nebulae and galaxies. ! In all, it's a super book." (Peter Grego, BBC Sky at Night, December, 2007)