Posts have been sparse this year. I am really pleased with my telescope but haven’t yet taken any more photos that I consider to be worth posting about. Most communication is directly with friends and family, which is definitely what I prefer; I have pretty well had enough of social media. I’m looking forward to a peaceful festive season and hoping for a better New Year for everyone.
Jen is Marwyn’s longest standing friend from primary school days, and this tune was made for her birthday this year.
Recorded in the park at Gatehouse of Fleet.
In March last year I obtained a photo of the Orion nebula that I was quite pleased with, but later was a little frustrated that my old 3 inch (75mm) aperture refracting telescope was a bit wobbly on my new alt-az driven mount, as it’s so long. I have been trying an assortment of long photographic lenses, but this year took the plunge and got a compact 500mm focal length telescope with a 100mm objective lens.
I have finally been able to try it out in dark skies, and was first of all really pleased by the view of M42 through the eyepiece. A few days later I was able to get the camera on the end of the telescope, and the very first image on the back of the camera had me amazed. It was just a 20 second exposure, but showed so much.
The image above is a stacked composite of 8 images, total 160 seconds exposure, ISO 1600, using RAW format. I fiddled a bit with the contrast etc to get the result here, but I can see that I will have a lot of fun with this setup.
A few people have asked about drawings and dimensions for my Moraharpa. I worked from various sources online but drew my own, and worked out what I would need for a keybox similar to a kontrabas keybox; I did not want the “authentic” original and rather limited keybox.
The body is finished now, but I am still finishing fitting the keys in the keybox!
Here’s a photo which will have to do:
I have been waiting for a suitable occasion in nice weather to record this for a month or two. The tune has been on my list of those to learn properly for a while, and I think “Pigopolskan” is a great tune.
Recording near some running water seemed like quite a good idea, and I think it was. I must get a wind shield for the recorder though, there are one or two blowy moments. In fact I used this first proper take rather than the second as that one began with a loud buzzing insect on the microphone!
This one came to me a month or two ago.
To me it sounds more Scottish than the usual sort of tune that appears in my head.
Another chance to play with real people – the nyckelharpa sounded great with two autoharps, and we had the fiddle and a melodeon as well. So lovely to be able to do this again.
At last! Some music played with real people, rather than the unreal Zoom sort! Both the fiddle and the nyckelharpa got some needed exercise.
Image above from the SpaceX video of the flight
This amazing vehicle has taken another step forward; it now flies and has landed safely, still using the same manoeuvre to get from horizontal to vertical just before landing.
Here’s the video:
It will be interesting to see what they manage next. It’s going to be a while before they get this into orbit.
Flying the Ingenuity helicopter carried on the NASA Perseverence rover is quite a feat. It has to be done completely autonomously; Mars is currently over half an hour away for round trip radio signals, so remote control is not an option. There’s no GPS to help navigation either!
A pity they couldn’t have tracked it off to the right as well, but at least it came back!
Here’s the mission website: https://mars.nasa.gov/mars2020/