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

Close and Far

Hey Artists!

I follow up with my own sketch of the remnant of the SN 1054, “The Crab Nebula”, (M. 1)
togather with a visitor, a comet which passed right over the western part of the Crab earlier
this day.
My sketch is old, but I think its still interesting.
I used crayons (watercolours) on black paper only. Info on my sketch.

The observation was made outside Trondheim, Norway.

Clear sky , Per-Jonny Bremseth.

On the Northeast Shores of Serenity

Object: Lunar crater- Posidonius
Location: Sydney, Australia
Date: 13th Nov. 2010
Media: Pencil, ink & paint on paper
Scope: 5” SCT
Eyepiece: 6mm TMB Planetary Type II, 200X

Hello again,
This is the first Lunar crater I’ve attempted in a long time, having being inspired by some sensational work here on ASOD. The sky has been very unco-operative for some time here in Sydney, so I also took advantage of a cloudless opportunity. This sketch was done under trying conditions- windy and with a very turbulent atmosphere really testing my patience as clarity of the image came and went so quickly.
It has also been a long time since I’ve really taken my time with a single Lunar feature. So detailed! So many soft features. So many fine features. So nice to rediscover a forgotten jewel of my sky.

Alex M.

Faces of Mars

Mars Compilation 2010
Mars Compilation – January 10 – March 9, 2010

These sketches were created by 27 members of the Sketching Forum. They are based on observations of Mars on and around its opposition, from January 10th, 2010 to March 9th, 2010. Multiple mediums were used from pencil and paper to digital. The community of forum members whose sketches are shown are from the following countries: France, Belgium, Germany, Lithuania, Netherlands, South East Asia, United Kingdom, and USA. The instruments they used and the date of their observation is as follows:

Jay Eads 250mm Newtonian 01/10/2010
Sol Robbins 152mm Newtonian 01/11/2010
MikeSemmler 80mm Refractor 01/23/2010
Kris 203mm Newtonian 01/26/2010
Cpl43uk 203mm Catiotropic 01/23/2010
Astroducky 318mm Newtonian 01/27/2010
Sixela 400mm Newtonian 01/27/2010
CarlosEH 229mm Catiotropic 01/29/2010
Dweller25 203mm Newtonian 01/29/2010
Jeff Young 152mm Catiotropic 01/29/2010
BillP 102mm Refractor 01/31/2010
Uwe Pilz 152mm Catiotropic 01/31/2010
Rerun 102mm Refractor 02/04/2010
Special Ed 200mm Catiotropic 02/05/2010
Jef De Wit 305mm Newtonian 02/04/2010
MarkSeibold 127mm Catiotropic 02/05/2010
Phxbird 152mm Newtonian 02/07/2010
Erika Rix 406mm Newtonian 02/07/2010
Mathteacher 100mm Refractor 02/07/2010
NUNKY 120mm Refractor 02/08/2010
Frank5817 333mm Newtonian 02/13/2010
Tommy5 152mm Refractor 02/14/2010
NerfMonkey 305mm Newtonian 02/15/2010
JayScheuerle 120mm Refractor 01/20/2010
Robert Forgacs 305mm Newtonian 02/02/2010
Roel 102mm Refractor 03/01/2010
S1mas 127mm Catiotropic 03/09/2010

Compiled and submitted by William Paolini

Watercolor Mars – March 4, 2010

Mars - March 4, 2010
Mars – March 4, 2010
Sketch and Details by Andrew Watkinson-Trim

Pencil sketch at eyepiece worked up with watercolours later in the warm! This is offered as a comparison with my first attempt at drawing Mars using the same equipment from the same location. The seeing was reasonable, but again the manual Alt/Az mount necessitated frequent repositioning of the object. I was attempting this time to capture something of the colour of the planet as seen in the eyepiece, to show the astro-camera-imagers at my astronomy club what sort of results are realistically possible for a novice with a bit of patience!


Moon over Armagh

Moon over Armagh
Moon over Armagh on Christmas Eve
Sketch and Details by Miruna Popescu

This painting depicts how the southern sky looks on 24 December 2009 at 5.30 pm, when the Moon’s phase reaches first quarter. The next brightest celestial object at this time is the planet Jupiter, which this year is the “Christmas Star” for the Royal School, Armagh. Jupiter is seen here just before it disappears behind the school. The painting shows stars in Pisces, Pegasus, Aquarius and other constellations, and the location of the planet Uranus (visible through a telescope) about a third of the way from the Moon to Jupiter. Uranus was found in 1781 (seven years after the old building of the Royal School was completed) by the astronomer and musician William Herschel, the discovery constituting the first identification of a planet since ancient times and earning Herschel the post of King’s astronomer from George III.

In 1609, the year after the founding of the Royal School, Galileo Galilei used an early telescope to map the Moon and discover satellites of Jupiter. To mark the 400th anniversary of Galileo’s first use of the telescope to observe the sky, 2009 is being celebrated worldwide as the International Year of Astronomy.

Dr Miruna Popescu from Armagh Observatory is the coordinator for the International Year of Astronomy 2009 in Ireland.

Star Child


Watercolor by Ashley, age 10 and Details by Deirdre Kelleghan

This beautiful watercolor painting of a nebula has won a prize in the ESO’s Catch a Star 2008. The artist, a young lady, is a pupil in Saint Andrews Junior College in Blackrock, Co Dublin Ireland.
I was delighted with every Irish entry this year,each child will get a certificate of merit.
I am particularly proud of Ashley’s work. Well done Ashley !!!!!

Saint Andrews is a school member of the Irish Astronomical Society


Deirdre Kelleghan
Irish Astronomical Society 1937 – 2007
Public Relations Officer IFAS
Oscail do Shuile D’iontas na Cruinne
Open Your Eyes to the Wonder of the Universe

Mobile 0872893828

Down a Jagged Path


The Meteor of July 27, 1894
Illustration by Chauncey M. St. John

THE METEOR OF JULY 27, 1894, 7h 30m P. S. T.

A great number of observations of this splendid meteor were received at the LICK Observatory, either directly, or through the kind offices of Hon. A. S. TOWNE, Hon. C. F. CROCKER, Hon. R. THOMPSON and others. Some of the best were not available till the middle of October. Very complete observations of the meteor’s position and appearance were made at Mount Hamilton by seven observers. Professor AITKEN of the University of the Pacific sent the only complete observation received here, viz., the altitude and azimuth of the meteor when it exploded, and the same co-ordinates of the point where it disappeared. Many good determinations of the point of explosion were received, the best being those of Professor FRIEND (Carson), Mr. CARLETON and Mr. BURCKHALTER (CHABOT Observatory), Mr. GEORGE BRAY (Santa Clara), Mr. W. B. JOHNSON and Mr. STONEROAD (Merced), Mr. HERROLD and Mr. HERRING (San José). Drawings of the brilliant cloud left by the explosion were received from Professor SCHAEBERLE (Mount Hamilton), Mr. JOHNSON (Merced), Mr. STEWART (Visalia); and excellent accounts of this cloud from Dr. O’BRIEN (Merced) and others. A beautiful and artistic water-color drawing of the phenomenon has been presented to the Observatory by Mr. CHAUNCEY M. ST. JOHN, which represents the general appearance in a most satisfactory way. The determinations of the place where the meteor disappeared were not so satisfactory, the reasons being, no doubt, that everyone’s attention was riveted on the cloud left by the explosion, and because the meteor divided into two portions near the end of its course.

When the last reports were received it was possible to fix with considerable precision the point where the meteor exploded. This point is in the zenith of a place about half a mile south and about half a mile west of the N. E. corner of T. II E., R. 8 S., M. D. B. and M. The explosion took place when the meteor was a trifle over 28 miles above the Earth’s surface.

It is not so easy to fix the place where the meteor fell. Bakersfield, Hollister, Los Gatos, Madera. Merced, Minturn (two observers), Mount Hamilton ( E. S. H.), San José (two observers), report that the meteor moved north as it fell.

College Park and Mount Hamilton (R. H. T. and A. F. P.) report that it moved south in falling.

Borden, Carson, Crow’s Landing, Fresno, Livermore, Los Baños, Oakland (CHABOT Observatory), Riverside, San Andreas, Santa Clara, Vallejo, Visalia, report. th.e direction of its’fall as substantially vertical; and, in default of more accurate data, I have assumed this to represent the facts.

The meteor disappeared before it reached the Earth. The fragments produced by the explosion were probably volatilized by the time they reached a height of some 6 miles above the Earth’s surface. It is hardly likely that any large fragments reached the Earth. If so, they should be sought for within a circle of some 12 miles in diameter, whose centre is the point previously described. If the observations of the point where the meteor disappeared had been more accurate, the place of the fall would have been better determined.

The meteor was seen by several observers long before it exploded—probably when its height was over 70 miles. The position of the radiant-point is R. A. 16h 0m, Declination +34°.5.

With these data I have calculated the orbit of the meteor. As the data are (in general) not very precise the elements of the orbit are but approximate. The orbit is assumed to be a parabola. The elements are:

Pi = 130°,
Omega = 125°,
i = 20°,
q = 1.016.

The meteor was then a little nearer the Sun than the Earth it was near perihelion, and moving in an orbit inclined some 20° to the ecliptic.

The Regents of the University have authorized the printing of a pamphlet on this subject, which will (in due time) be sent to our correspondents. This pamphlet will also contain the observations of the August meteors of 1894 made by Professor SCHAEBERLE at Monte Diablo, and by Messrs. COLTON, PERRINE and POOLE, at Mount Hamilton.

From The Publications of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific, Volume VI, 1894, pages 268-270 at Google Books

Watercolor Eclipse

Lunar Eclipse

Lunar Eclipse of January 28, 1888
Painting and Details by Professor L. Weinek of Prague

The wonderful coloring of the moon, when more than one-half of its disc is immersed in the shadow of the earth, which, as we know, is produced by the refraction of the rays of the sun in the atmosphere of the earth itself has as yet not been faithfully reproduced by any one. While the eclipsed moon stands out glowing against the dark sky, it offers such a variety of the most delicate tints of red, brown and blue that the artist is inspired by the beautiful sight, and seeks to reproduce what he sees. Through similar impressions I was led to attempt the painting of the phenomenon of the 28th of January, 1888. Relying upon my color-memory I made notes during the eclipse of the colors and localities where they were to be seen, and the very next morning I executed the picture in water colors. Without relying upon one’s memory, the following would seem the safest method by which to make a correct picture of the appearance and values of colors seen at night. The night scene should first be painted at the telescope by the aid of lamp light. In this case, however, the color gradations, made by daylight, could not be relied upon, as artificial light changes the appearance of the colors considerably; the correct tints would have to be found by experiment. Moreover, this picture, having been produced by lamp light, would, if examined by day, give an entirely wrong impression of the true appearance of the original. Consequently it would become necessary to illuminate the picture by day with the same lamp, after excluding all other light (perhaps by placing the picture in a closed box and examining it through a suitable opening) and to look upon it as a new original, and then to copy it by daylight in the usual manner.

As regards my observations of this eclipse I refer to my article on the subject published in No. 2846 of the “Astronomische Nachrichten.” I observed with the six-inch STEINHEIL Refractor of the Prague Observatory, with a power of sixty diameters, and made my picture at 1 1h 18m Prague mean time. At this hour the rim of the umbra of the earth’s shadow passed through the centre of Mare Nectaris, through Mare Tranquillitatis and east of Mare Crisium as far as Mare Humboldtianum. Towards the bright portion of the moon the grayish black shading of the umbra assumed a smoky brown hue, in consequence of the penumbra of the earth ; whereas towards the eclipsed portion, south of Tycho and north of Lacus Mortis it changed to a bright blue tint, and still farther towards the northeast it turned to a most beautiful red, which may be described as being a subdued mixture of rouge de saturne and carmine; it exhibited almost all the detail of the lunar landscape, together with numerous bright objects. This red coloring was particularly beautiful over Mare Imbrium, Plato, Sinus Iridum, Copernicus, Kepler and Aristarchus, and extended in an easterly direction beyond Gassendi; while westerly from this crater Mare Nubium and Mare Humorum assumed a sombre black-brown aspect. The crater Aristarchus was as conspicuous among all other objects during the eclipse as it is when the moon is fully illuminated, owing to its remarkable brightness. In consequence of the technical difficulties which are encountered in the process of printing in colors, the relative values of the colors as well as the gradual decrease of the line of the shadow of the earth are not presented in the accompanying picture as correctly as might have been desired. On the whole, however, this reproduction may be called a satisfactory one.

Image and text published in Volume IV of the Publications of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific – 1892, available at Google Books.