Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Comet Pan-STARRS Attempt II

FINALLY got some clear skies and time to try for this elusive little ice ball. Despite the hype it is not exactly a naked eye entity. Knowing the approximate region for where it should be towards the WNW, it was only after making a test shot that I was able to determine the exact location. From there it wasn't difficult to photograph though I never actually saw it for myself. Utilizing the 300mm, I am satisfied with this first comet since unsuccessfully trying to get McNaught on a digicam back in 2007 (lol). I should however, have given myself ample time to find more suitable foreground subject. Weather permitting I may try again but this ridiculous chill that wants to hang on despite being the vernal equinox makes for less than ideal shooting conditions.

Right around the 8 o'clock hour is when it seemed most apparent. Due to the earth's rotation, it does not take long to drop to the horizon. As it does, it loses clarity due to earth curve atmospheric interference. The farm is a little over a mile away and was the best I could do given what was available. Annoying as the light is, it helps for night focusing. I'll spot autofocus on a distant light such as this, flip it to manual once it does, check, then reposition camera if need be. Started out at 800 ISO, F 4.0, 15s

Then went 1600 ISO, 13s

Ideal foreground but now too late, still pleased though.

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