Getting Started: Budget Astrophotography

Now available! Getting Started: Budget Astrophotography

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Allan Hall makes learning how to photograph the night sky easy with his new book Getting Started: Budget Astrophotography. In this guide, you will learn the fundamentals of photographing the heavens- what it is, how it’s done, and how to do it yourself. Getting Started: Budget Astrophotography is divided into these three sections in order to provide a comprehensive overview of the basics of astrophotography.


The first section of Hall’s budget astrophotography guide focuses on understanding the art. Amateur and professional stargazers know that one of the most important things to consider when viewing the heavens is light pollution. Light pollution is exactly what it sounds like – too much light in our environments makes it more difficult to get a good look at planets, stars, and other celestial bodies. If you want to get the best view and photo possible, you must find a location that has little light. This makes a huge difference. In addition to finding a good location for viewing and shooting, you will learn about camera basics, including how to mount a camera and focus a lens. Beyond that, you will read about various types of telescopes and what they do.


The title of the second segment of Getting Started: Budget Astrophotography speaks for itself. Once you’ve learned the fundamentals of location, cameras, and telescopes, it’s time to put your knowledge to use. This section discusses how to find targets, as in how to find objects of interest to shoot. From capturing images to camera and exposure settings, you will learn how to make the most of our instruments and location by taking a great shot. This section also discusses making videos, image stacking, and image editing, an important aspect of imaging. Many of the celestial shots we see are time-lapse or edited in some way (to improve clarity and reduce visual “noise”). While it may sound difficult, this reference guide simplifies the processes by providing step-by-step instructions.


For the handy home astrophotographer, this section includes information about do-it-yourself projects. From modifying your equipment (for example, improving your focus capabilities, modifying a webcam for imaging, and even adapting your laptop screen to function in the dark) to building add-ons, you’ll learn how to enhance your experience in your own home. Hall provides information about creating glass solar filters for your cameras and even making your own dew heaters. Getting Started: Budget Astrophotography is a great reference guide for beginners and amateur astrophotographers. If you have an interest in astronomy and want to capture what you’ve viewed through a telescope, doing so is possible from your own home. Hall’s comprehensive guide also provides ideas about where to start (as in, what targets are best to photograph), where to find more information about astrophotography, and even a glossary of terms. Indulge your hobby and learn how to improve with Getting Started: Budget Astrophotography.

Paperback / Kindle


Files related to my budget astrophotography book can be downloaded below:

 acrobat  Read the table of contents for Getting Started: Budget Astrophotography
 acrobat  Read the introduction for Getting Started: Budget Astrophotography
 zipfile  M31 processing example lights, 795MB 
 zipfile  M42 processing example lights, 264MB 
 zipfile  M45 processing example lights, 631MB 
 zipfile  Darks for M31, M42 and M45 processing examples, 223MB 
 zipfile  Saturn processing example AVI video file, 31MB (NOTE: Requires WinRAR to extract) 
zipfile  ImageMagick 6.8.6-9 – Newer versions have changed and you may find that the they will not work with the examples in the book. Here is the older version I used for the budget astrophotography book. 18MB
zipfile GIMP 2.9.5 – The nightly build for GIMP has changed locations, here is a version that will work with 16bit images and the examples in the Budget Astrophotography book until GIMP 2.10 is released. 100MB

Paperback / Kindle

I hope you enjoy Getting Started: Budget Astrophotography!

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