A Personal View of the Universe - Nik Szymanek
The night sky has always been a place of mystery and intrigue. We are extremely lucky to live in a time where every day brings fresh marvels from the state of the art telescopes that are in orbit above the Earth's turbulent atmosphere. It would be easy to assume that the interested amateur astronomer could never hope to match the sheer beauty of such imagery but this is far from the truth.
This Astronomy Now special publication features the photography of British astro-imager Nik Szymanek and covers a range of photographic methods from basic to advanced. Beautiful pictures of the night sky can be obtained with a simple camera and tripod before tackling more difficult projects, such as guided astrophotography through the telescope and CCD imaging. Modern digital cameras and computer techniques are powerful allies in the battle against light pollution but here you will also find breathtaking pictures using very basic equipment taken from magnificent dark sites such as La Palma and Muana Kea, Hawaii. Included are pictures taken by the auther with the two-metre Faulkes Telescope alongside many images taken by professional astronomers using the UK's Isaac Newton Group of Telescopes, to which the auther had exclusive access for image processing.
The daytime sky is also magnificent and beautiful, with a range of spectacular phenomena playing out above our heads. Many of these can also be captured with a basic camera and lens. Enjoy the drama!