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N3ptune

2018-06-05 - Mars

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Hello, I did this sketch of Mars on 2018-08-05 one sketch at the beginning of the observation and the other one at the end. Both showed what I think it a ice cap at the top of the planet in Newtonian inverted image. It was not easy but I tried to add some surface shades too, features I could see over the dust storm, it's getting better.

Even at low elevation, the disk was very sharp, I think a part of this is due to my latest mirror collimation exercise which gave me substantial global improvement on all views.

I used my 200mm Newtonian with a 9mm Xcel LX to draw the top sketch and the 6mm HD-OR for the second sketch, both with the Celestron magenta Mars filter, which I find very effective to help the eye with what I think is ice.  The bottom sketch is more accurate then the top one due to.. perhaps eye adaptation ? I just know it was much easier at the end of the observation and the planet had a bit more elevation too.

The scene was also remarkable at low power 42x with even some visible features.

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Thanks for watching, I hope you liked this log too.

 

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Nice sketches.  You've captured the subtlety of the albedo features very well.  It's all too easy to make them look much darker and exact than the remnants of the dust storm are allowing us to see them at the present time.  :smile:

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ahhfff it was difficult @paulastro  in the second sketch there is one place for sure it was darker, close to the ice spot. The Ice cap and one spot of dark shade close to it, that I am pretty sure. But the other dark spots were appearing and disappearing, my eye could not capture the definite shape for the rest of the disk.. i had to do the exercise by memory.

Thanks for watching these sketches of this obviously very interesting planet, even in such bad conditions.

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Hi  Neptune,  yes,  I agree with paulastro that you have captured the subtle tones and tenuous markings very well. I also submit a recent colour sketch of Mars, where indeed, I have probably made the features rather more obvious than they were in practice, although there were brief flashes of good seeing when all was revealed. However, I think the dust storm is gradually subsiding so still promise for the future.    Chris. S1010006.thumb.JPG.98a45127431e25a3217ff78541731554.JPG 

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I understand where Paul is comming from regarding the ease of exaggerating intensity and exactness of features. However, there is nearly always more in an eyepiece image than first meets the eye. It is very difficult not to overexaggerate albedo intensities if you're trying to differentiate subtle differences in features, so as to represent the full amount of detail on view. There are at least three different intensities in any view of Mars and with patient observation there could be many more. Once these have been accurately recorded in the sketch a well defined outline will often present itself, which is something that can be easily misinterpreted as an exaggeration. The initial eyepiece view of any planet is lacklustre compared to a prolonged study of it, as over time intricacies reveal themselves in those fleeting moments of good seeing. Mars is a particularly difficult subject, especially when its so low in our skies, but patience and persistence while training the eye to see rather than just look, will ultimately result in a fine and trustworthy observation. The next apparition in two years time will be much better.

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7 hours ago, mikeDnight said:

The initial eyepiece view of any planet is lacklustre compared to a prolonged study of it, as over time intricacies reveal themselves in those fleeting moments of good seeing. Mars is a particularly difficult subject, especially when its so low in our skies, but patience and persistence while training the eye to see rather than just look, will ultimately result in a fine and trustworthy observation. The next apparition in two years time will be much better.

I'm well aware of all this as I thought you'd  know Mike.  I was giving credit to N3ptune for producing a rendition which represents very well how the planet appears when first looking through the scope - which is what  many casual observers of Mars, and also to those who don't have the inclination, time, or ambition to study it for longer periods to produce a finished drawing showing a more prolonged study. 

I was NOT criticising the fine drawings produced by yourself ( or those of Chris Bradley  who's colour studies  are excellent ) or suggesting that you are   'exaggerating intensity and exactness of features' which is what you wrote.   

Personally I think there is room for both types of sketch and I like to see examples of both, the more the better!  :smile:

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I agree! N3ptune's sketches are truthful and technically excellent, and a real credit to a very skilful visual observer. I was merely giving an explanation as to why some sketches may appear over cooked as it were.

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