L13: Gassendi (second try)

On 10 February 2014 I made a sketch of lunar crater Gassendi. At the time I was just starting out in lunar observing and this was my first sketch of a major lunar crater. It goes without saying that I found the task quite challenging. Yesterday, and almost two years down the road, I had the opportunity to make a new sketch of Gassendi.

Both observations made using a SkyWatcher 10″ and av TeleVue Nagler 3-6 zoom eyepiece. The sketch to the left was made on 23 October 2015, UT 18:00 (col. 51.1º and lun. 10.83), the one to the right on 10 February 2014, UT 21:00 (col. 44.3º and lun. 10.02). South is up.

At both occasions Gassendi was sketched under similar (but not identical) lighting conditions and with good seeing (4/5). This means that the differences between the two sketches are due not to atmospheric conditions or the sun angle, but rather to my experience as a lunar observer.

After many years of deep sky observing I know from experience that the hours spent at the telescope slowly increases your ability to see faint details and to observe low contrast object. But when I started out doing lunar observations I would never have guessed, that the hours spent gazing at comparably bright and contrasty lunar features, would have a similar effect. Obviously they did. My sketching techniques has improved somewhat (still a long way to go), the precision in the depiction is better, but most notably I am happy to see that my attention to detail have increased.

I will try to return to Gassendi in the years to come. Hopefully the next sketch will show some further improvements.


L13: Gassendi & Mare Humorum

A rather quick sketch of Mare Humorum and a number of prominent craters, including Mersenius and Gassendi. The seeing for once was perfect, but after having finished several other sketches the same evening my endurance failed me.

Sketch made on 4 October 2014 using a SkyWatcher 10″ and a TeleVue Nagler zoom 3-6 mm.

Below is an earlier sketch focusing on the Gassendi crater. This was my first try at a close up sketch of one of the larger craters. At the time seeing was perfect, but light clouds kept interfering.

Sketch made on 10 February 2014 using a SkyWatcher 10″ and Baader Genuine Orthos 5 & 9 mm. North towards the bottom.