Catching Light

Photography by

Dan Lessmann

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Articles and Tips


These are some articles that I've written for the Oklahoma City Astronomy Club's Gazer's Gazette.  All are in Adobe Acrobat format.  Get the Adobe Acrobat reader here.


Astrophotography On The Cheap - A discussion on entering into the world of digital astrophotography for minimal cost.


Telescope Optics 101, Part 1 - The first part of a series of articles to aid the beginner in understanding how our telescopes work and what we can do to maximize their performance.


Telescope Optics 101, Part 2 - Part 2 of this article.


Mounts and Coordinates, Part 1 - And introduction to the coordinate systems we use to measure the cosmos around us and the various types of telescope mounts and their use.


Mounts and Coordinates, Part 2 - Part 2 of this article.


Mounts and Coordinates, Part 3 - Part 3 of this article.


Other Resources on this Site


Astrophotography Pointers - A page on this site that relates some of what I've learned in my astrophotography pursuits.


Astrophotography MISTAKES!!! - A page on this site that relates some of the mistakes I made in equipment selection and some of their costs.


Digital Image Processing Techniques


Here are pages I've added that discuss some image post processing techniques and tricks that I've learned.


Enhancing M42's Core - A discussion on ways to use masking and selections in Photoshop to enhance the appearance of astrophotography images with large differences in luminance.


Enhancing a Still Life Shot - A look at simple post processing methods that can improve a raw image.



More to come...


Some Sites and Books I've Found to be Helpful in My Astrophotography Pursuits


Backyard Astronomy Basics, Thanks Liam Brown for recommending this site and best of luck in your future scientific exploration!  This is a great resource for the beginning astronomer.


The New CCD Astronomy, Ron Wodaski - The New CCD Astronomy is a book considered to be the bible of CCD astrophotography by many including me.  This is a great book for learning the intricacies of CCD astrophotography.


The Handbook of Astronomical Image Processing, Richard Berry and James Burnell - This book includes AIP4Win a very capable post processing software and delves deeply into the mathematics behind image processing and acquisition.  In my opinion, a must read to become truly proficient in the art of post processing.


A Practical Guide to CCD Astronomy, Patrick Martinez and Alain Klotz - Though a bit dated another fine book on the mathematics behind image processing.


Introduction to Digital Astrophotography, Robert Reeves - I picked up this book too late to be of great use to me but it's a fine book for the beginner that wishes to begin defining his goals and equipment requirements.


Mike Weasner's LXD55 Site - Mike's site is loaded with information on getting the most out of the LXD55 mount as well as many other scopes and mounts.  Take note especially of the LXD55 Tips and Tricks on this page if you have a mount similar to the LXD55.


Last Updated: 03/15/2018  -  Copyright 2004-2013 by Dan Lessmann.  All rights reserved.  Please click here for my usage policy.