I used to have very bad cameras, with no zoom, or some digital zoom. So I decided to buy a nice camera with a big optical zoom, so I could take nicer pictures. And I bought, in December of 2006, a Sony Cyber-shot H2, image stabilized 12x super zoom super-duper, and got together with it a tripod. Now in my mind, I was ready to some star pictures =D
I couldn’t be wronger. I pointed the camera to the skies set the longest exposure the camera could handle and snapped a shot. First lesson learned: With all this zoom and exposure time, press the camera button makes the camera shake… and there is no image stabilizer that can help it.
I was not ready to give up. Set the timer to 10 seconds (or something like it) and snapped another shot. Second and most important lesson of the night: The earth spins. Of course you learn it in elementary school but I was impressed how much the earth spins in such a short time. And I was laughing of myself for a very long time.
This night I had some star trails, but nothing interesting enough to make me want to keep it. Or to follow this path on Astrophotography. Also I googled around to realize that you need a tracker to compensate the rotation of the Earth and take good pictures.
Disappointed, I decided to try something a bit more shiny, which would not need long exposures and the Earth’s rotation would not mess with my pictures. And during this “vacation” in Vancouver, I took many pictures of the Moon.
And that was my first achievement on astrophotography:
Crop 1:1 of the pictures.
I was very happy with the result and to be able to see the craters in the Moon for the first time in a picture I’ve made.
In the end, I realized that my equipment was great for pictures on land, and everyday usage, but not anything enough for an astrophotography. So I had to postpone this dream.