Shooting for a comet

Tuesday, 14 July 2020

Today is my 200th day of posting. That’s quite the achievement!

Another achievement was finally capturing a decent shot of comet Neowise. At least I THINK I captured a decent shot. The images are currently downloading to my hard drive. It’s 11:21 pm. The clock is ticking…loudly! I don’t want to mess up my posting streak because I was outside having a ball photographing the night sky and that sweet comet with it’s even sweeter tail.

Thanks to Mom for helping me find it. I was positioned on the front lawn, binoculars in hand, camera set up, oh so ready to go.

Camera set up to capture the comet. ©WQuinn 2020

It seemed to take forever for the sun to go down and the first stars to come out. I kept checking the app. It continued to show me where it was. But I couldn’t see it. I’m presuming because it was still too bright. Just as I was about to throw in the towel, Mom appears at my side, says something, I jump…she startled the bejesus out of me! She had been inside on her iPad looking for the comet, came out to show me and pointed to the sky, exclaiming “There it is!”

I looked to where she was pointing and sure enough, there it was. I had looked there, over and over and over again. Huh.

What’s funny is, as I look at the photos, the one below I took at 9:17 pm. I have a habit of pointing the camera to where I think something might be and letting it go. The screen is too small to see what I’ve captured…little did I know I had actually captured the comet…

I took a few shots and they weren’t bad but then the traffic kept interfering:

Neowise and light trails from traffic. ©WQuinn 2020

So we popped into the car, headed over to the concession where it was darker and quieter and took a bunch of shots. Mom even saw a shooting star pass right over the comet.

Comet Neowise. Photo of the day, 14 Jul 2020 ©WQuinn

A quick look at the pics and they’re not quite as good as I hoped…slightly out of focus. I’ll try working on them in Affinity Photo tomorrow. But now that I know where to look, I’m going to head out every night and practice until I get something I’m happy with.

I must say that capturing the comet at night is much more reasonable than those early mornings last week!