Venus-Uranus-Mars—Two Conjunctions

Conjunctions of Venus, Mars and Uranus - 11 March 2015
Conjunctions of Venus, Mars and Uranus – 11 March 2015

Object Name (Venus, Mars, Uranus)
Object Type (Planet conjunctions)
Location (Artignosc-sur-Verdon – Provence, France)
Date (11/03/2015)
Media (graphite pencil, watercolour pencils, white watercolour paper,

I always have issue to find Uranus, without GoTo, it’s not so easy…and I don’t like facility…
Thinks are moving in our planet system. It’s why “planetos” in Greek means “vagabond”.
So I use the opportunity of this double conjunction just a week from each other to find Uranus and its so nice colour.
The Venus-Uranus separation was 5.2’ Venus was 10’000 more brilliant than Uranus, while the separation between Mars and Uranus, one week later was 16.25’
The faint K star between Mars and Uranus is HIP 4325 mag=9.5, so no Uranus satellites were visible with my material.

I sketch the two fields on white watercolour paper with inverted method using a chromatic wheel, orange for Venus, blue for Mars and crimson red for Uranus then I just have to invert the two sketches after scanning. The deal is to manage the colour values in inverted mode.

Clear sky to you all, and for some of you I wish you a nice eclipse on Mart 20.

Michel Deconinck Aquarellia – Astronomie

Planetary Alignment – Mercury, Venus, Mars

Mercury, Venus, Mars - 9 January 2015
Mercury, Venus, Mars – 9 January 2015

Object Name: Mercury, Venus and Mars

Object Type: Planet

Date: 1/9/2015

Location: A Coruña, Galicia. Spain.

Media: drawing on picture, edited and enhanced with Gimp

Nikon binoculars 15×70 IF HP

SeeIng: 2/5. Some clouds

This drawing shows the planetary alignment in these days. As the picture taken with the phone was very bad, I decided to draw a picture that showed the beauty of the image.
The brightness of Venus is seen against the weaker yellow Mercury. The red glow of Mars came a bit latter and sharing view with it, the star Iota Aquarii showed its pale white light.

Conjunction Venus, Mars and Moon

Conjunction Venus, Mars and moon - 20 February 2015
Conjunction Venus, Mars and moon – 20 February 2015

Object Name: Venus, Mars and moon
Object Type: Conjunction
Location: Mystków, Poland
Date 20.02.2015, ~17:00 UT
Media: graphite pencil, white paper, PhotoFiltre 7

Hello everyone.
This is my latest sketch conjunction of Venus and Mars. The planet was near the moon, one day after the new moon. You can see the moon was light gray. When sketching, the sky was clear, visibility was very good, light wind was blowing.

Smiling Christmas Eve Moon & Mars

The conjunction of the crescent Moon and Planet Mars - December 24, 2014
The conjunction of the crescent Moon and Planet Mars – December 24, 2014


Every Christmas Eve, my family treks to the top of Haleakala to feel the chill and look for Santa’s Sleigh. This year we went to the 10,000 el to find it a cold 36*, wet, and blowing rain. After a few minutes we jumped back into the car a bit disappointed, to descend the mountain. Right before the park exit the sky had mostly cleared and the winds calmed. There we hiked under the “smiling” Hawaiian crescent. Chilled cheeks and fingers, it was perhaps one of the nicest Christmas Eves ever. This sketch was drawn from my memory of the evening.

In the winter months the path of the Moon is more parallel with the horizon giving the lunar crescent in Hawaii a bowl or smile like appearance when lit from the already set sun. Ancient Hawaiian’s called this the “wet moon” because it looks like a bowl that could be filled up with rain. As the winter moves into Spring & Summer the crescent shifts to “pour” water onto the land, empties and becomes a “dry moon” once more. Wet moons occur routinely in the tropics where the sun and moon rise and set nearly vertically.

3.5 day old Crescent Moon & Mars
12/24/14 1930 HST
Haleakala National Park, Hosmers Grove
Black Canson paper with colored Conte’ Crayon and watercolor pencils

Cindy (Thia) Krach

Webmaster’s note: Wishing all astrosketchers a Very Happy New Year and looking forward to another year hosting all your wonderful observational sketches!

Richard Handy
Jeremy Perez

Mars adjacent to the Lagoon Nebula

Messier 8, "The Lagoon Nebula", an emission nebula in the constellation Sagittarius
Messier 8, “The Lagoon Nebula”, an emission nebula in the constellation Sagittarius

Mars adjacent to the Lagoon Nebula
(Planet and Emission Nebula)
Hartesbeespoort Dam South Africa
28th October (2014)
Graphite Pencil, smartphone photo using the invert function on PS phone app.

In Southern Skies at the moment and made the most of the opportunity to sketch some really nice deep sky objects in and around the teapot including M7 and the Lagoon Nebula (with Mars adjacent to it)

Moon Race Watercolour

July 4-8, 2014 - Conjunction of Moon with Mars, Saturn and Spica
July 4-8, 2014 – Conjunction of Moon with Mars, Saturn and Spica
July 4-8, 2014 - Conjunction of the Moon, Mars, Saturn and Spica
July 4-8, 2014 – Conjunction of the Moon, Mars, Saturn and Spica

* Object Name (Moon, Mars, Saturn)
* Object Type (Conjunctions)
* Location (Artignosc-sur-Verdon – Provence – France)
* Date (2014 from 4 to 8 July)
* Media (Watercolour, white paper, to invert the result)

From July 4 to 8 Moon played with planets. From a purely astronomical point of view the Moon showed us some beautiful conjunctions, Mars, Spica and then Saturn. By the way the game was a little complicated with the clouds. What a season!
On July 5, the moon was still visible behind heavy clouds. The next day, I have not even been able to detect the moon light ! I had to invent the sky. July 7, when the Moon approaches Saturn, clouds returned to disturb the magic of the moment. I’m a bit fed-up about this weather, and I think not being alone!
The advantage of astro-artist on the astro-photographer is that we can complete our design. This time I have to add the missing lunar position on the view. And to capture those irritating clouds, I painted a hazy wash around the Moon as was the case on July 5.
The small hilltop village that served as a foreground is called Artignosc-sur-Verdon. I confess to being quite happy by this view. Artignosc is just halfway to two now well-known astro-spots “The Blaque” in Varages and the OAB in Bauduen. And ‘cause we are nevertheless in Provence, believe me above the clouds the sky is very dark!
Still … what a season!

To do this watercolour, I went out on my terrace at ten PM every night, sometimes before the storm, sometimes after and once during, being passionate or you do not. Every time I sketched some sketches in a hurry, and took two or three pictures allow me to keep the shades. At the workshop, I started by gathering the different positions of the stars and their locations relative to the village. In less than a week, only the Lunar race was noteworthy, Mars and Saturn are much quieter than the stars. Then I realized in reverse mode (colors and contrast) this watercolour. I just had to scan my sheet and reverse the colors.

Michel Deconinck

Mars: 02:00UT May 31, 2014

Planet Mars - May 31, 2014
Planet Mars – May 31, 2014
Planet Mars - May 31, 2014
Planet Mars – May 31, 2014

Mars: 02:00UT May 31, 2014

Average seeing and transparency occurred during the entire observation time.
I was using a 6 mm eyepiece to get the magnification up to 241x.
The color version was made indoors after the graphite eyepiece sketch.

The north polar cap was small and clearly visible. Mare Acidalium appeared very dark and Niliacus Lacus appeared somewhat darker than during my observation one week ago. Sinus Meridiani, Sinus Sabaeus and Margaritifer Sinus were all clearly visible. Clouds were visible over Aeria and the parts of Syrtis Major just visible at the preceding limb. Clouds also covered Tharsis.

Equipment and Sketching:

This is an eyepiece sketch made with a HB graphite pencil, blending stumps, White Pearl eraser on white sketching paper and assorted colored pencils.
Date 05/31/2014 – Time 02:00 – 03:00 UT
Telescope: 10 inch f/5.7 Dobsonian on an equatorial platform and 6mm eyepiece 241x with a Neodymium filter
Temperature: 20°C (68°F)
Partly cloudy, calm
Transparency 3/5
Seeing: Antoniadi III

Mars: May 31, 2014; 02:00-03:00 UT
CM 355°, Dist. 0.79 AU
Dia. 11.9”, visual mag. -0.5
Illum. 91.4 %

Frank McCabe

Mars at Opposition 2014

Mars at  2014 Opposition - Chart is comprised of sketches from 19 separate observations
Mars at 2014 Opposition – Chart is comprised of sketches from 19 separate observations
Mars at Opposition 2014 - Chart is comprised of 19 separate sketches
Mars at Opposition 2014 – Chart is comprised of 19 separate sketches

I made ​​19 drawings during the opposition of Mars in 2014, observed T400 x450 750. Prior work finalized in color, I kept on files other than the “gross eye” picture. This allows me to offer two world maps: one color, the other from these crude drawings.
The method:
– Flattening drawings with the “MAP” function IRIS software;
– Creation of a mosaic with a logicile retourche image of the best areas of each drawing.

J’ai réalisé 19 dessins lors l’opposition martienne de 2014, observé au T400 x450 à 750. Avant le travail de finalisation en couleur, j’ai conservé sur des fichiers à part l’image “brute d’oculaire” . Cela me permet de vous proposer 2 planisphères : l’un en couleur, l’autre à partir de ces dessins bruts.
La méthode :
– mise à plat des dessins avec la fonction “MAP” du logiciel IRIS;
– réalisation d’une mosaique avec un logicile de retourche d’image des meilleurs zones de chaque dessin.



Mars - April 28, 2014
Mars – April 28, 2014
Mars - April 30, 2014
Mars – April 30, 2014

Please find attached 2 of my recent Mars observations from this week rendered with Watercolour paints.

I used my 153mm Triplet F9 refractor, binoviewer and neodymium filter, 15mm Tele vue panoptic eyepieces yielding 215x.

I hope that they are of interest. Seeing was difficult on both occasions, but I have enjoyed seeing the bright clouds which the refractor has shown ably.

Kind regards, Dale

Do you want to know more about my interest in astronomy? If so take a look at my Website:

Keep up to date with observations from Chippingdale Observatory by reading the Blog

Mars: May 06, 2014

Mars - May 6th 2014
Mars – May 6th 2014
Mars - May 6th 2014 colorized
Mars – May 6th 2014 colorized

Mars: May 06, 2014

Earth’s atmosphere was only permitting a mediocre view at best.
To the south bright Hellas was visible up to the limb. Mare Tyrrhenum, Mare Cimmerium and southern Syrtis Major all appeared dark, contrasting nicely with lighter Libya and Aeria. The northern reaches of Syrtis Major appeared much lighter than the southern parts. Alcyonius Nodus was intermittently visible.
A portion of Elysium could be seen but was mostly cloud covered. Utopia and the North Polar cap were plainly visible. Limb haze was present on both the preceding and following limbs.
It is always a pleasure to view and attempt to make a sketch of Mars.

Equipment and Sketching:

This is an eyepiece sketch made with a HB graphite pencil, blending stumps, white Pearl eraser on white sketching paper. Colorized version made indoors from the eyepiece sketch and notes on the colors needed from colored pencils.
Date 05/06/2014 – Time 04:10 – 05:15 UT
Telescope: 13.1 inch f/5.9 Dobsonian and 6mm eyepiece 333x with a Neodymium filter stacked on a neutral density filter; An Equatorial platform was also used
Temperature: 6°C (43°F)
Partly cloudy, breezy
Transparency 3/5
Seeing: Antoniadi III-IV

Mars: May 06, 2014 04:30 UT
CM254°, Dist. 0.66 AU
Dia. 14.15”, visual mag. -1.1
Illum.96.5 %

Frank McCabe

Mars Observation (April 29, 2014)

Mars - April 29, 2014
Mars – April 29, 2014
Mars feature location and nomenclature chart - April 29, 2014
Mars feature location and nomenclature chart – April 29, 2014

I made an observation of Mars on April 29, 2014 (03:30 U.T. or 11:30 PM EDT) using a 9-inch (23-cm) F/13.5 Maksutov-Cassegrain at 258x and 310x. Syrtis Major was prominent preceding the central Meridian (CM) with a cloud noted over its midsection flowing towards the East and into Libya (extending from an Equatorial Cloud Band (ECB) extending from from the following limb). The Hellas basin was noted to be very bright south of Syrtis Major towards the southern limb. Sinus Sabaeus was visible as a dark extension from the CM towards the South-following limb. The North Polar Cap (NPC) appeared small and brilliant. The NPC was surrounded by a dark collar. Dark to dusky maria was noted over the northern hemisphere of Mars. I have included an image that is labeled with the nomenclature of the majority of albedo features noted.I hope that you all like it.


Mars April 20, 2014

Mars - April 20, 2014
Mars – April 20, 2014

Hello, here is a picture of Mars made ​​with my Dobsonian Telescope 12 “equipped with a binocular , with a magnification of 500x. Viewing conditions were really excellent, which was rare in early spring … Many details were visible, including the famous Syrtis Major and Sinus Sabaeus visible right training up. I also observed a beautiful cloud formation on Elysium, left visible at sunset

Détails :
Object : Mars
Location : France (Vendée-Atlantic)
Date : 20/04/2014
Support : Mars Gabarit and Pencils Derwent Academy

Good reception and thank you for your interest
Best regard, Yohan Archambaud ( Vendée, France)

Mars April 19, 2014

Mars in color - April 19, 2014
Mars in color – April 19, 2014
Mars - April 19, 2014
Mars – April 19, 2014

Mars April 19 2014

Conditions were poor to average for viewing and sketching Mars. Mars is now at 15″ of arc and 0.62 A.U. from us. 99.4% of the disk is illuminated and shining at visual magnitude -1.4. The central meridian of Mars was centered at about 41.87° at the beginning time of the sketch.

Sinus Meridiani was visible near the limb on the preceding side. On this side clouds were visible over Eden. Mare Erythraeum, Margaritifer sinus and Aurorae sinus were all detectable to the south (up). Lighter Chryse could be seen at the equator with Niliacus Lacus, Mare Acidalium and Nilokeras blended together. Tharsis was under clouds on the following limb. The north polar cap is small in size and set apart by Mare Boreum.

Equipment and Sketching:

This is an eyepiece sketch made with a HB graphite pencil, blending stumps, White Pearl eraser on white sketching paper. The colorized sketch made indoors was completed using ground shavings of colored pencils (blue, orange, yellow, white)

Date 04/19/2014 – Time 05:00 – 05: 48 UT

Telescope: 13.1 inch f/5.9 Dobsonian and 9mm eyepiece 218x with a single polarizing filter and Neodymium filter used together; An Equatorial platform was also used

Temperature: 3°C (37°F)

Clear, breezy

Transparency 4/5

Seeing: Antoniadi IV -III

Frank McCabe

Mars in Virgo

Mars in the constellation Virgo - April 18, 2014
Mars in the constellation Virgo – April 18, 2014

Hello my Friends ASOD, I observed a few days ago from the home to the neighboring planet, with good views, but with the pollution of the city there are no problems for red small. Continents showed well defined in my scope and feel free to make this sketch giving rise to the original on the right side shown in the image and colored on the other side giving a hue similar to that shown by the eyepiece, for further reducing the image and display framing the view. It was a nice domestic observation learning a little more about our sister planet perhaps.

Best Regards.

Object name: Mars
Object type: Planet
Location: Madrid ( Spain )
Date: 18 April 2014
Hour: 00:30 < 01:45
Media: graphite pencil, Tortillon, processed and inverted gimp 2.8
Optical equipment: Dobsonian telescope Meade Lightbridge 10'' F/5 Eye piece Ethos 8mm + Barlow 2x
Magnification 317x True field 0,3° web site

Mars Opposition Watercolou​r

Mars Opposition-April 15, 2014
Mars Opposition-April 15, 2014

•Object Name (Mars)
•Object Type (Planet)
•Location (Artignosc sur Verdon – France)
•Date (April 15th)
•Media (Watercolour on white paper, digital tools Paint.Net for the text)

I use my 4” refractor (achromatic) f/10 – 200x to make the initial sketch; sadly the 12” Dobson give me less contrast for this target. Although the full Moon was very bright, (maybe more bright because of the clear sky of my new small village of Artignosc), details on Mars were easy to watch.

After making the first sketch, some locals came in my backyard to have a look, I like that, and sharing beauty is so easy to do.

For this image I use watercolour, on a very humid 300gr paper, I let the pigment floating as I saw the planet colours. The water helps me to give a natural look and feel. Of course this image has no any scientific value; this is just to keep a souvenir of this Mars close passage. Don’t try to compare the little details of my watercolour with reality; I let that to my astrophotography friends, they are so good today!

More info (in French sorry) on

Friendly yours

Michel Deconinck

Mars in Opposition

Mars on April 13, 2014
Mars on April 13, 2014

Planet Mars on sunday 13th of april 2014, sketch is made five days after mars was in opposition. We should expect that during opposition – april 8th – the smallest distance between our blue and the red planet is achieved. However, this time the two planets elliptical orbit reaches it’s closets distance on april the 14th.

The sketch is made on sunday the 13th of april 2014. The telescope : TEC 160ED, F8 – 11 mm Plossl eyepiece met 2x Barlow lens. TFov 0.3 °. Afterwards adapted in Pro-create en Psd

Mars White Cloud

White clouds on Mars-April 6, 2014
White clouds on Mars-April 6, 2014

* Object Name: Mars
* Object Type: planet
* Location: La Fontasse (Tarn – France) N43.63 E2.35
* Date: April 6th 2014 21h40 UT
* Media: pencil HB + 2B, white drawing paper, scanned + colorized with PhotoPaint

As shown on the detailed view, I experimented the negative drawing with black pencil.
Just by inverting the image, I obtain quite the final result.
I just played with colour and contrast to make it “real”.
Next time I will try to make a negative drawing with blue pencil, to get directly the salmon colour of Mars…

NOTE : The pink colour is real, because of the lunar filter which adds a bluish-grayed hint
This filter provides more contrast and reduces the light intensity.

Conditions: humidity 60%, 12°C, no wind.
– Dobson Orion XT12 (305 x 1500mm => F/D 5)
– Eyepiece Televue Delos 4.5mm (mag x 330)
– Moon filter 1.25″

Excellent transparency and very good seing
Half Moon shining in Gemini

Because of the moonlight, the star party was dedicated to planetary observation.
So I decided to make my first sketch of Mars, as I only once could really see it with details last year.

For the first time I could distinctly see two dark zones : one butterfly shaped (right) and one banana shaped (left)
The sky was good enough to expect to see the north polar ice cap.
I actually saw a scattered brighter spot on the upper part of the disk.
As you never know the orientation of an object in your eyepiece, I decided this was the north pole ice cap of Mars.

Back home, while looking for the name of the dark zones (Acidalia Planitia & Meridiani Planum), I discovered that the north pole was on the right side of the disk.
So, what was this white spot ???
I found the explanation from a recent photo of Mars, on, showing a white cloud storm, in the same area.

This is how I discovered my new speciality: meteorologist of Mars ! 🙂

Thanks for your interest.
Jean-Marc Saliou
APAM astro club – France

First Drawing of Mars Opposition

Mars - February 5, 2014
Mars – February 5, 2014

* Object Type: planet
* Location: CASTRES (Tarn – France) 43° 36′ 19″ Nord2° 14′ 27″ Est
* Date: 5th February 2014 4hTU
* Media: pencil HB + 2B, white drawing paper, scanned + rescaled + colorized with PhotoPaint

Orientation: north is up
Conditions: 2°C, no wind. 70% humidity
– Dobson Pearl 203mm
– Eyepiece hypérion 5mm Mag 240X


After à rainy and mainly cloudy winter ( just some clear nights with poor seeing …) last sunday before the dawn I get some reasonably average condition to observe Mars and to try my first drawing of the 2014 opposition, inspite the small diamètre (10.9″)

Hope many others will follow Emoji and perhaps if best condition occurs with my 22″ dobson

Thanks for your interest.

Clear sky

Emmanuel Pélegrin
APAM astro club

Astronomie: comptes rendus d’observations
Météo: bulletin non conventionnel à 15 jours
Vidéos de Manu

Mars – January 7, 2012

Mars - January 7, 2012
Mars – January 7, 2012

2012 01 07 – Mars
PCW Memorial Observatory, OH – Erika Rix
16” Zhumell, f/4.5, non-tracking Dobsonian mount
12mm WA Burgess, 2x Barlow, 300x magnification
Filters: Mars, 82A blue, 21 orange
5.6 C, 64% H, S: Pickering 4-5, T: 3/6
CM: 159.8°, Ls: 54°, Phase: 0.92, V. Mag: 0.1
RA: 11h 32m, Dec: 6° 18′ 51″

This was my most recent Mars observation from a few weeks ago. With only one or two clear nights since then, the timing was such that it prevented me from being able to crack open the observatory.

The early morning of the 7th, I had ample time to let the mirrors cool down on the telescope and collimated before dark. It was a little windy but had calmed down by 3am. Still, seeing wasn’t the best. I cold make out the NPC straight away and it appeared tucked in on the western and eastern edges more so than my observation the week prior. There was a definite dark streak above the NPC in my view and a few more darkened patches scattered around the disk. Very slight limb brightening on both the preceding (just prior to the terminator toward either pole) and following limbs.

I had to nudge the scope time and time again to let Mars slowly drift through my FOV before slight variances in albedo became apparent. It was nearly impossible for me to match them up with labeling programs such as Mars Previewer II or my Mars Globe app on my iPad because the two views on those programs were a little off from each other even though I checked the date, time and location several times. In the end, I went with Mars Previewer II since I’ve been using that program the longest.

I’m very much looking forward to more opportunities with Mars as it reaches opposition. If only my primary mirror was clean…sigh.

The sketch was created using charcoal on card stock, charcoal pencils, willow charcoal, vinyl eraser pencil and kneaded rubber eraser.

Mars, Jupiter and a Crescent Moon for Breakfast

Mars, Jupiter and Crescent Moon - October 29, 2013
Mars, Jupiter and Crescent Moon – October 29, 2013

Object Name : night sky
Object Type : Planets, stars and moon
Location : Montréal, Canada
Date: October 29th 2013
Media: pastel, white and pink gel pens on black paper

Unable to sleep I decided to get up early on October 29th. It was 5:00 in the morning and the air was crisp but the sight was absolutely gorgeous. I decided to get my pastels and try my best to represent the ambiance and colors of the scenery. Mars was at the left side of a crescent moon and Jupiter hanging high at the right hand side with Castor and Pollux (Gem)

Jean Barbeau

Warrior in the Cradle

Conjunction of Mars and Messier 44
Conjunction of Mars and Messier 44

Hello friends:

Planetary conjunction at dawn: Mars in The Beehive (M44)

Graphite drawing on white paper (inverted Ps).
Binocular 12×80 (4,2º) at 4:30 UT (height of Mars 21º over horizon)

Mars is within the cluster and framed by the four stars of
Cancer (Asellus Borealis, Asellus Australis, 31 Cnc and 33 Cnc). Its colour was bright orange between blue and white stars.

Mars – February 19, 2012

Mars - February 19, 2012
Mars – February 19, 2012

Object Name: Mars
Object Type: Planet
Location: Lombard, IL, USA, 41° 52′ 48″ N / 88° 0′ 28″ W
Date: 19 Feb 2012, 22:20-22:45 CST
Media: Pencil
Comments: This is Mars observed using my homemade 8″ f5.9 dob and Baader Hyperion 5mm, I had a pretty good seeing that evening. After scanning the picture, color balance was adjusted in Photoshop to better resemble observable Martian palette. The image to the right was generated by Stellarium for comparison.

Mars and Mercury

Conjunction of Mars and Mercury
Conjunction of Mars and Mercury

Here join my last watercolour

Object Name (Mars and Mercury)
Object Type (Planet conjunction)
Location (Sainte-Anastasie-sur-Issole, Provence, France)
Date (08-02-2013)
Media (watercolour)

This February 8th between 17h and 18h (UT) I wanted to watch an unusual planets conjunction and set, Mars and Mercury separated by only 15 ‘. This could be seen through the long and wide belt of Venus. I found a peak of 360° free to obstacles – 500 meter altitude. North we see clearly two winter sports resorts and South the Porquerolles Island and its lighthouse – 2 x 10 sec, so… the “M” morse letter, to celebrate our two planets M.. ?
It was cold with a strong wind, I still observed one hour. Some pictures with my little camera and two quick sketches, a complete landscape and an eyepiece vision, in order to be ready to make a watercolour, the day after.
Mercury was bright, clearly visible with a white light. Mars was 8 times less light but very red. No details with my reflector 100/500, plus an eyepiece K12mm. We can just imagine the disc-shaped appearance of the two planets. Mercury was gibbous almost full and very close the tiny and still red planet.

Clear sky to you all !

Michel Deconinck

Mars – March 18, 2012

Mars - March 18, 2012
Mars – March 18, 2012

Hi everyone.
I’d like to present you my newest sketch of our Universe. It’s one of Solar System planets – Mars. It’s little small in this year opposition. It’s still beautiful, though. But the good seeing days have gone with coming of spring in Poland. I’m sure it was one of the last days with such a stable air before Mars will move away from Earth. So I decided to perpetuate the Roman god of war.

Object Name: Mars
Object Type: Planet
Location: Płaza, Poland
Media: graphite pencil, white paper, inverted in Photoshop CS2

2012 Mars Opposition

2012 Mars Opposition
2012 Mars Opposition


This year was my first “Mars-season”. At the first observation I was like: “What? How am I supposed to see any details at this tiny thing?” But I stayed persistent and Mars revealed his beauty bit by bit. And at the end I was surprised about the visible details.

Location: Carinthia – Austria
Media: Graphite pencil on white paper. Afterwork and coloration with Gimp2.

Mars – February 10, 2012

Mars - February 10, 2012
Mars - February 10, 2012

On the night of Feburuary 10 th, 2012, ….. with a good, stable atmosphere, I could observe fairly good details on the surface of Mars.

General whole details of my sketch are seems to resemble the photographes of Fredd. Willems in the [Alpo – japan ] homepage on FEB. 3th , 2012. who had taken it with a C 14.

One of differences between my sketch and C 14 photoes is , the size, shape of the rather graysh white elliptical spot which sticked together beside the ” BIGGER” white NPC. …… my sketch shows ( that is to say, in the eyepiece view ….) a fairly more bigger size elliptical spot than C-14 photo.

telescope; 8 inches achromat f/ 12 refractor at x500
home-made equatorial
Location; at backyard my house in South Korea
white paper, graphite pencils

Mars – March 23, 2012

Mars - March 23, 2012
Mars - March 23, 2012

Location: Bayarian Alps, Germany
Date: 23. March 2012, midnight
Media: Pencil on Paper, scanned
Observer: Christian Rausch
Telescope: 12inch/F5 Dobson (Hofheim Instruments)

– seeing: II (good)
– 375x and 500x (Nagler Zoom 3-6mm)

Since the transparency in this night was poor I’d to cancel all my faint objects from my list.

But the seeing was good an therefore I decided to have a try with Mars. Attached the result.

Best Regards

Mars opposition 2012

Mars - March 2012

Mars – March 2012
(Move mouse over image to view labels.)

Overview of my Mars sketches in March 2012.
During March large areas of cloud and haze where visible.
Especially till the end of the month the region of Hellas Planitia
appeared very brigth with overlayed clouds.

Pencil on white paper, black background added in PS

Telescope: 9.25 inch f/10 SC, 300x-335x

Lambert Spix

Mars – March 14, 2012

Mars - March 14, 2012
Mars - March 14, 2012

I was able to enjoy a rare break in my schedule to observe the planet Mars just past opposition. The night sky was affected by intermittent clouds that eventually obscured the view, but allowed me a brief look at all the same (the limited view did not allow me to use a blue filter). What initially struck me was the amount of cloud activity noted over the Martian disk (especially over the preceding (evening) and following (morning) limbs. The North Polar Cap (NPC) was small but brilliant (10/10) with some dusky (4/10) streaks noted within it. I welcome any comments on my observation.

Date: March 14, 2012
Time (U.T.): 03:30
CM: 209.5ºW
Ls: 83.0º, De 21.6º, Ds 24.6º
Phase 99%, -1.1m, 13.7”
Instrument: 9-inch (23-cm) F/13.5 Maksutov-Cassegrain
Magnification: 310x
Filters: None (IL)
Seeing (1-10): 5-6 (moments of 7), T: 4/6

The North Polar Cap (NPC) was small and brilliant (10/10) with thin, dusky (4/10) streaks noted with it (especially over the preceding half). The NPC was surrounded by a dark (3/10) collar. The NPC remnant Olympia (~210ºW) was noted south of the NPC as a thin, very bright (8/10) streak. The preceding (evening) limb was very to extremely bright (8-9/10) and an orographic cloud (associated with Olympus Mons?) was noted attached to it. The region east (preceding) Elysium (Amazonis/Arcadia/Azania/Phlegra) appeared dusky (4/10) and mottled (fine detail noted when the seeing steadied). A very bright (8/10) cloud was noted noted over Elysium (7/10), possibly Albor, that appeared to extend towards the north over Cebrenia and into Panchaia. Mare Cimmerium appeared dark to dusky (3-4/10) with fine mottling noted within it, especially when the seeing steadied. The fine, dusky (4/10) parallel streak north of Mare Cimmerium, Valhalla, was noted as well. Clouds were noted over Aetheria towards the following (morning) limb (very bright to extremely bright (8-9/10).

A digital image produced in Pixelmator.

Carlos E. Hernandez

A Small Meeting in Leo

Mars, Messier 95 and 96
Mars, Messier 95 and 96


In attachment you can find sketch of extraordinary event on the sky – “conjuction” of Mars and two galaxies M95 & M96

Short description:

Object Name: Mars, Messier 95, Messier 96
Object Type: planet, two spiral galaxies
Location: Budy Dłutowskie – small village in central Poland
Date: 17.03.2012
Media: graphite pencil, white paper, color invert
Telescope: Columbus 320UL (320/1384 Newtonian) + Orion Q70 26mm
Seeing: 4/5 (poor)
Transparency: 4/5 (poor)
NELM: 5,2 mag

Two days ago I had opportiunity to observe very rare event on the sky – Mars “met” two spiral galaxies M95 & M96. Galaxies were really hard to observe because Mars was really really bright. I didn’t notice any details inside galaxies but the whole view in large FOV was really impressive.

Clear Sky

Mars Opposition 2012

Mars - March 4, 2012
Mars - March 4, 2012

Sketch of 04/04/2012 by Vixen refractor 80/1200 mm and 10 mm eyepiece with a set of sky watcher, seeing good moments, details: the polar caps are clear detail, darkening around them too, it was hard narrowing and identifying the continent, but could advice :). Enlarge small because a small, but gave the (120x)
Clear Skies !

Mars – March 9, 2012

Mars - March 9, 2012
Mars - March 9, 2012


here is my best Mars in this Season. Two days ago, the air was calm between 22.30 und 23.30 very well. So I took my drawing board and held the pretty details of the red planet. The surface shows us the white polar cap, Olympus Mons, the Tharsis-Region with it´s Mountains.

Object: Name Mars
Object Type: Planet
Location: near Tauberbischofsheim Germany
Date: 09.03.2012 23.00 p. m.
Media: graphite pencil and white Paper

Best greetings


Mars – February 11, 2012

Mars - February 11, 2012
Mars - February 11, 2012


Here is my submission to the asod website.

It is a sketch of Mars, made february 11th of 2012, 1h00 UT.
Location was the The Netherlands, the small town Lochem.

Telescope used was a 20 cm Newton telescope, mounted on an equatorial platform.
The magnification was 250x. I observed with the aid of a binoviewer.

The drawing was created with a cirkel template of 10 cm. A black pastel pensil was used.
It was colorized with Photoshop Elements.

Tom Borger.

Mars – December 26, 2011

Mars - December 26, 2011
Mars - December 26, 2011

2011 12 26 – Mars
Erika Rix, Ohio, USA

We’ve been fortunate to have a few clear nights for observing lately. Mars season is upon us and it feels great to have a chance to try out my new filter set: Mars, 82A blue and 21 orange.

This sketch is a composite of all three filters. I started off with the Mars filter for an overall view. Syrtis Major was the first area I noticed. Next were the north polar cap and the darkened area around it. Faint structure started to appear but became even more apparent when I switched to the orange filter. Lastly was the blue filter that made the NPC and Hellas pop out dramatically. The following limb was brightened. Seeing was above average with slightly poor transparency. The session had to end because of clouds, but I felt the session was pretty much completed by that time anyway.

The sketch was created using charcoal on card stock, charcoal pencils, willow charcoal, vinyl eraser pencil and kneaded rubber eraser.

Mars in Leo

Mars in Leo
Mars in Leo

Hello astro-artists

I send you a Mars and Regulus conjunction sketch made this morning, November 13th 2011 at 4h50 UT.

The technique used is watercolour for the foreground and inverted graphite pencil for the sky.

To merge my sketches I use the free software.

The chimneys are typical for my Provencal region. Observation made from Rocbaron in France.

Clear sky to you all

Michel Deconinck