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Topics - Larry

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Landscape / jrista et al, Why Astrophotography?
« on: March 22, 2014, 01:03:41 PM »
Nothing I say here is meant to be critical or disapproving, it is an honest inquiry in an attempt to understand the appeal of this type of photography.  :)

I seem to be motivated primarily by a desire to capture scenes that are in some way unique or especially attractive, at least to me, and prefer that they be something real, as nearly as possible representing what was seen. By this I mean as a "standard human being" might happily experience some personal discovery of natural beauty. The image hopefully allowing an after-the-event reasonable facsimile sharing with others who were not present to hear "Wow, look at that!".

Here is my (very)limited understanding of astrophotography;

One sets up an unusually specialized and expensive amount of gear (scope, camera, filters, cooled sensor, tracker,etc.) …then goes through a usually quite complicated post-process (stacking, etc), and, if successful, ends up with an image which is practically identical with thousands of other photos of the same subject, taken from the same distance, with the same perspective, and in "enhanced"colors which vary according to the processor's taste, and may be nothing at all like the view of the subject which a space ship passenger might see with his own eyes, if close enough.

If this is a roughly correct description of what is going on,  it seems that only the basic form/density(ies) of the subject is actually captured, with the rest of the visual impression being more or less filter-effect digital artwork.

Add to these thoughts the fact that most all of the popular targets have "been done" in a practically un-matchable manner by Hubble, and I, personally, am left with a sort of "What's the point?" feeling.

I can understand the satisfaction of meeting the technical challenge of doing it oneself, …but beyond this, I am puzzled by the appeal vs. effort vs result factors.

More power to those who enjoy this type of photography (I agree that the results can be quite beautiful, taken at face value), but If comments are possible without ruffled feathers, i would appreciate some educating, …as i seem to be missing a gene re something that for many seems to be quite a passion.

Happy to have my vision broadened, and any errors above corrected.  ???


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