The last few nights have held a lovely conjunction with Mars, Saturn and the bright star Spica forming a striking triangle in the evening sky.
Although Mars and Saturn are not the brightest planets, I was keen to capture an image that would show the colour variation between the orange-red of Mars, pale yellow of Saturn and the brilliant blue of Spica. Hope you like this image I captured as the three set behind some eucalyptus (gum) trees on the evening of Sunday 12th August, while I was running a workshop on the shores of Lake Eppalock, in central Victoria, Australia.
Colourful Conjunction of Saturn (right), Mars and Spica (left): 12th August 2012Canon 5D mkII, Pentax 300mm lens
20 minute exposure, f5.6, ISO100
My original plan was to try and capture an image on my tracking equatorial mount (EQ6) but I got distracted with other things, then couldn't find the blur filter I wanted to use and ended up losing it in the trees from where the mount was setup before I had got many images. So I switched to Plan B which was using the camera just on a tripod to get some out-of-focus star trails. The first attempt looked promising so I experimented with some longer exposures and this is what I ended up with. A bit abstract but I like it :-).