Shooting for the Stars
Shooting for the stars or planets in this case is a fun adventure. I was able to garner interest with my photography club to meet in an open area and practicing social distancing to try to capture the Saturn Jupiter Conjunction of 2020 that was expected on December 21, 2020.
I used Google maps to look for a location that had a clear line of sight to the Southwest sky and was pleased to see our community's golf course back porch was a good spot. I then used PhotoPills to plan my shots. Our location did not lend it to using a foreground object, so we shot mostly zoomed-in shots of the event.
So, on the 21st it was cloudy all day. The planets were expected to be in alignment at about 6:30 PM that evening, so the clouds were a big disappointment. At about 4:00 the clouds began to depart and by 5:00 all the clouds were gone. That was great and we were excited that the event was going to be visible to us. Unfortunately, the clouds started to return about 5:30 but in small amounts, so our hopes were high. As the time approached the clouds increased and we were taking shots as the clouds would move in to block our view and then move on and reveal the planets. By 6:15 it was 100% cloud cover and we missed the pinnacle of the event.
I am only posting two photos because they are all essentially the same. The first photo was on the 21st before the clouds took over. The second photo is the day after on the 22nd. If you compare the two photos you can see the change in alignment from the 21st when they were going to line up (but I missed due to cloud cover) and the photos from the 22nd (the day after). In the photo from the 21st, you can see Saturn almost straight up from Jupiter and if the clouds would have held out another 15 or 20 minutes it would have been awesome. In the second photo, you can see the separation and they never lined up as one.
Keywords: 21, astro, astrophotography, conjunction, december, exposure, jupiter, long, night, photography, planets, saturn, stars
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I am glad you found my blog. I am a photographer with a passion for awesome shots. I go to great lengths to capture many of my photos. I will re-visit a location over and over knowing there is a spectacular photo just waiting to be had if I am there at the right time. I also enjoy finding how to do some abstract projects (check out my time-lapse post) and will be writing about them.
Send me a note via my contact page for some projects you would like to see me try and write about. I am not afraid to try almost any project. Doing the obscure forces me to do things that I don't do with the typical photo shoot and helps me learn even more.
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