Cheeseburger Anyone?

NGC 7026, "The Cheeseburger Nebula", a planetary nebula in the constellation Cygnus
NGC 7026, “The Cheeseburger Nebula”, a planetary nebula in the constellation Cygnus


This is my sketch of the Cheesburger Nebula, NGC 7026, a Planetary Nebula in Cygnus. I did the sketch in my Orleans, Ontario backyard using graphite on white paper on Sept 23, 2014, a night of great seeing. It was cleaned up and inverted in Paint Shop Pro. The nebula is quite small, fairly bright with two diffuse nuclei and a hint of darkness between them. Even at 300x in my 12 inch dob I couldn’t confirm if the Cheeseburger has a pickle!

Clear skies,


NGC 7293 Helix Nebula

NGC 7293, "The Helix Nebula" a planetary nebula located in the constellation Aquarius
NGC 7293, “The Helix Nebula” a planetary nebula located in the constellation Aquarius


After 4 years of “try & error” with a faint NGC 7293 in the horizon haze of central Europe I finally finished “my Helix”, using the 24” Dobson at Hakos Guestfarm in Namibia. No haze, but 70 degrees high in the sky, the Helix was an impressive beacon, details were easy to report. I wasn’t prepared to see the halo, my template was too small to sketch it, so I had to use a second sheet. Seeing was moderate, I didn’t see the faint background galaxy 2MASX, but… nevertheless I enjoyed it!

Object Name: NGC 7293, the Helix Nebula
Object type: Planetary Nebula
Location: Hakos Guestfarm, Namib Naukluft, Namibia
Date: June 4th, 2014 (about 2 hours total of sketching)
Media: Pastel and graphite pencils
Optics: 24” Dobson f 4.0
Filter: OIII

Additional aspects:
Field is about 30’ wide, east is up. To concentrate on object (and not on dimensions) I used a pattern of stars printed from Guide 9 as a template. Pinpoint stars added by image processing software (to replace printed and sketched stars)

More sketches:

Clear Skies!

Abell 70

Planetary nebula Abell 70 and background galaxy PMN J2033-0656 make a beautiful duo
Planetary nebula Abell 70 and background galaxy PMN J2033-0656
make a beautiful duo
Abell 70 and galaxy PMN J2033-0656 field details
Abell 70 and galaxy PMN J2033-0656 field details

Hi All,

Not up to the quality of recent CCD images but something I certainly found pretty
exciting Abell 70 and friend in Aquila. I know that Abdrew Robertson has taken a look
after I shared this with him, so I hope that it inspires other too.

Here is my blog that accompanies the sketch:

I have been ‘told’ reminded and prompted regarding my lack
of astronomical activity this summer! I hold my hands up, guilty as charged I
cry, there are a couple of short tales from the sky that I have failed to share
here, but in general, I have been off elsewhere! Playing harmonicas, painting, and
drawing watching bands, associating with hot rodders in my truck, playing with
bee hives, building large garden structures and generally having a good time!
OK I get the message, astronomy is not for neglecting and I feel guilty so I’m back
and will make every endeavour to keep it that way.
With a stiff talking too from my friend Keith on Sunday
evening ringing in my eyes, the clear Monday evening sky forced me into the
observatory, the cob webs were incredible; it took me a while to clear the
worst of them. I set up the scope, plugged in the leads, opened the stiff roof
sections and pointed the scope skywards. It was only dusk, but I was eager to
make amends for my inactivity, I didn’t have a target in mind, so I thought
something bright, a revisit perhaps, to ease myself back into things. I flicked
through a few of the books on the shelf for inspiration, the scope was supposedly
pointing at Altair in Aquila, so something in that constellation would be good,
short hops would keep things accurate, I thought.

Nothing so far, until I looked through Kepple and Sanner,
last image for Aquila was Abell 70, no pencil tick on it so I hadn’t observed
it previously, mag 14.5 the text said hmmmm… hardly a bright object but well
with ‘scope’ excuse the pun.
OK target object decided upon, I went indoors for my evening
meal and got back into the obsy around 20.00. I got the scope aligned on Altair,
focus was out I tweaked that, so was collimation, I tweaked that, but really
another pair of hands were needed so it certainly wasn’t spot on, but it would
do! The sky was hazy, certainly not a great night. I hopped to Abell 70 aka PK
38-25.1 via a couple of brighter stars, re-syncing at each stop. Another short
slew and I turned up the camera gain and dialled in 15sec exposure and there it
was, small in the 12’ x 12’ fov, a truly round and fairly faint ring nebula,
but what was that going on along one side, it looked like an edge on galaxy,
with a core considerably brighter that the shell ring nebulosity of Abell 70. I
looked up Abell 70 on the web and sure enough there was a distant back ground
galaxy designated PMN J2033-0656 that made this observation, unusual and
special. I increased the cameras exposure to my max of 20 seconds and made a
sketch, the increased time exposure pulled out the central star, tiny but sharp
it also showed up another star close to nebula that I wasn’t able to see at 15
secs. I didn’t use the usual BAA observing form to sketch and
record rather reaching for black art paper and rendering the ghostly ring and
galaxy using white watercolour pencil and blending stump.
I was delighted at this observation after anticipating a ‘soft’ option for my return,
I was back with a bang, catching a new object with an unexpected added attraction!
Boy I have missed this observing malarkey, thanks to all who have given me stick
over not observing

Pax stellarum, 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

NGC 40

NGC 40, "The Bow Tie Nebula" a planetary nebula in the constellation Cepheus
NGC 40, “The Bow Tie Nebula” a planetary nebula in the constellation Cepheus


I submit you a sketch of NGC40, which is a planetary nebula in the constellation of Cepheus. The nebula is beautiful but its understanding is a bit complicated because the details are either difficult to see or obvious but hard to localise with precision.
It took me more or less two hours to draw NGC40 with my 250mm (10 inches) dobson with a Nagler 5mm eyepiece (that gives a magnification of 250x).
I draw with graphite pencils (4B and B) on 180g white bristol, then in used Photoshop CS6 for the colors inversion and stars processing (making them perfectly round and add the colors).

Object Name: NGC40
Object Type: Planetary Nebula in Constellation Cepheus
Observing Location: Rolle, Switzerland
Date: 6th September 2014

Have a nice day and clear skies.

José Rodrigues

NGC 40

NGC 40, "The Bow Tie Nebula", a planetary nebula in the constellation Cepheus
NGC 40, “The Bow Tie Nebula”, a planetary nebula in the constellation Cepheus

Object Name : NGC 40
Objet Type : Planetary nebula
Location : Melgar de Fernamental ( Spain )
Date : 2014, Septembre 3d
Lunar day 9
Drawing instruments : Graphite pencil , GIMP program to invert the colours
Equipment used : 8″ Newt , Baader ortho classic 6mm , Astronomik UHC filter

The object is easy to find but rather dificult to see , the central star hides the nebula

Clear skies


The Box Nebula

The planetary nebula NGC 6445, The Box Nebula
The planetary nebula NGC 6445, The Box Nebula

Object Name: NGC 6445 – “Box Nebula”.
Object Type: Planetary Nebula.
Location: San Miguel, Buenos Aires Argentina.
Date: 18/08/14.
Media: HB, 2H, blend stump and PS for green color (OIII). Averted vision.
Telescope: Meade LB 12″ on equatorial tracking platform.
Eyepiece: Plössl 6.3mm + Astronomik OIII filter.

Messier 57, The Ring Nebula

Messier 57, The Ring Nebula
Messier 57, The Ring Nebula

Object Name – Messier 57, The Ring Nebula
Object Type – Planetary Nebula
Location – Tullamore, Co. Offaly, Ireland
Date – 06 August 2014
Media – Graphite pencil on white paper (Image inverted)

This is my first sketch of M57. Observations were made using an Orion XT10i and a 17mm Wide Angle (65° FOV) lens.

The seeing conditions were average, however i made the sketch from my back garden under light polluted skies. There was also a half moon present which added to the skyglow.

I used averted vision to notice the subtle features of the slightly elongated nebula. The central star was not seen in my telescope.
Observations were made with and without a DMC Narrow Band Pass Nebula filter. The filter slightly increased the contrast of the nebula while obscuring the background stars.
Overall I am very happy with how it came out.

The Ring Nebula

Messier 57 - The Ring Nebula
Messier 57 – The Ring Nebula

Object name: M57, The Ring Nebula
Object type: Planetary Nebula
Instrument: 6″ Newtonian reflector, 6 mm eyepiece, UHC filter
Location: Gladbeck, Ruhr area, Germany
Date: July 18, 2014
conditions: 23 °C / 73 °F, clear and calm, fst = 5,2 mag
Media: graphite pencil (4B) on white paper, graphite powder and cotton swab, inverted and edited with GIMP 2.8
Clear skies,

M27 Nebulosa Dumbbell

Messier 27 (NGC 6853) "The Dumbbell Nebula"
Messier 27 (NGC 6853) “The Dumbbell Nebula”

Object Name: (Dumbbel Nebula M27 / NGC 6853)
Object Type: (Nebula)
Location: (Bercedo (Burgos) – Spain)
Date: (2012-09-15 / 23h 15m UT)
Media: White paper, 4B, 2B y HB graphite pencil, scanned and inverted with Photoshop
Telescope: Celestron OMNI 127 XLT (Smith-Cassegrain 5”)
Eyepiece: Baader Hyperion 13mm
Transparency: Clear, Rural Skies.
Location Constellation: Vulpecula
assessments: Dumbbel nebula appears a manner reminiscent even hourglass, but as if it had moved from side to side and left as a halo (something like a horizontal X but faded)

For more details of my observation you can visit my blog:

Thank you and best regards.