The Astrophotographer’s Log Book

Astrophotography involves many important steps, from choosing equipment, planning the object to photograph, setting up and taking down equipment, and processing image data, to data storage and presentation of your astrophotographs. The process of creating astrophotography images is a lengthy, long-term project, although excellent images can be made either singly or over a short period of time. However long it takes, though, it’s difficult keeping all the necessary data in your head, especially over multiple sessions and targets, different equipment and, not to mention, years. You could enter the data on your computer or reference your online posts, but an analog copy will long outlast any digital journal you may use.

The Astrophotographer’s Log Book arose from documenting my own imaging sessions, but rewriting the same information over and over in a blank notebook. Doing it by memory each time, it was easy to miss adding a line of data, or write it in another place for that session, or flip back and forth between pages to make sure I had it all written down correctly and in order. So, the notebook became, over time, a less-organized and incomplete record of my imaging sessions. In the paragraphs I wrote, it was difficult to consistently find the information I needed for planning follow-up sessions and time consuming to search the pages for it. I looked for a journal or format to meet my needs and discovered there were many different versions of observer’s logs, but almost no journal books for astrophotographers. And, those that did exist, seemed very open-ended and more like the blank book I was already using. So I compiled this set of pages I hope will also fit your needs and help you have more productive and repeatable imaging sessions, and provide a detailed memory you can look back on in the future.

This log book is for astrophotographers who want to record as much data for each session as they like, or at least have the available place for it when they do. It’s for beginners to help establish good imaging session habits early on, for the advanced astrophotographer who wants and needs a consistent place to record and find the data they worked hard to collect, and for the astrophotographer who likes to look back on old records and reminisce about those special sessions.

The Astrophotographer’s Log Book, at 6″ x 9″, is sized to fit easily into your astrophotography gear bag. The front and back covers are laminated 2mm book board for a solid writing surface on your imaging table or your lap. The thick covers also make it sturdy and durable under the varied conditions you might experience, whether at home or at a remote dark site. A built-in bookmark makes it easy to locate where you left off. The front and back covers are designed by the author. The end papers are also handmade by the author and each set is unique. The Log Book is wire-bound and opens flat or a full 360 degrees.

More information and to purchase at blueplanetphoto.com/product/the-astrophotographers-log-book-25-sessions/:

The Astrophotographer's Log Book front cover
APLB-session page-1000

White Sands National Monument Photo Workshop & Giveaway

White Sands National Monument photography workshop, March 20-27, 2018

Join me March 20-27, 2018 to explore the beautiful, minimalist landscape of New Mexico’s White Sands National Monument, a dramatic environment of shifting contrasts, lighting, patterns and textures with a backdrop of the rugged San Andres and Sacramento Mountains. Emphasis during this workshop will be your interpretation of the stark dune environment using your senses and perceptions to search for simple, elegant compositions using elements to give depth, graphical design, and abstract impressions from broad panoramics to up close macros. We’ll discuss in a group and individual one-on-one guidance about using light and shadow to create form, improving composition, setting exposure under difficult lighting conditions, abstract impressions, and sensing and perceiving the environment to help find subjects and make meaningful photographs. Each student will also receive a copy of my book The Ecology of Photography.

Also, I’m excited to share that this workshop has been chosen as an Unordinary Trip of the Month by Infohub.com, the #1 portal on the internet dedicated to out-of-the-ordinary, special interest vacations. If you book my White Sands National Monument photography workshop before January 5, 2018, you will be entered in a random drawing among those registered for my workshop to receive a one-year full membership to the GPSmyCity app for Apple and Android, from InfoHub’s sister company GPSmyCity. Since there is a maximum of 8 for this workshop, your odds are pretty good!

The GPSmyCity app features offline city maps, self-guided walking tours, and travel articles for 1,000 cities worldwide. Because the app works offline, there’s no worry about roaming charges when using the app abroad. One lucky person who has registered for my White Sands photography workshop will be randomly selected to receive a one-year full membership to the GPSmyCity app and the over 6,500 self-guided city walks, offline city maps, and travel articles, a value of over $8,000 (includes all in-app guide purchase options).

2017 Workshops

Here are some of the workshops I have scheduled for 2017. Come join me and explore these amazing locations while learning to improve your photography and way of seeing. I’m working on others for summertime and into 2018, including an Antarctica workshop for 2019.

Winter in the Palouse Winter in the Palouse, Feb 9-14

Iceland Twilight Iceland Twilight, March 5-16

Alvord Desert, Oregon Alvord Desert, Oregon, April 14-16

Oregon Coast Oregon Coast, May 14-20

Yosemite National Park Yosemite National Park, May 24-30

Monterey & Point Lobos Monterey & Point Lobos, May 31 – June 5

Spring in the Palouse Spring in the Palouse, June 9-14

Washington Coast & Olympic National Park Washington Coast & Olympic National Park, June 16-22

Fall Colors of Iceland Fall Colors of Iceland, September 1-12

Scotland: Here Be Dragons Scotland: Here Be Dragons, September 14-23

Acadia National Park, Maine Acadia National Park, Maine, October 11-15

Portland & Japanese Garden Portland & Japanese Garden, October 17-20

February – May Workshops

This is the year to dive deep into your creative process, to explore and discover what makes you tick and what excites you as a photographer. 2015 is the Year of Why. I’ll be offering a series of what I call Why Workshops where we’ll explore how we use our senses to be more aware of and find meaningful subjects to photograph, how our senses and perception affect what and how we photograph, and what it is about us as individuals that inspires us to create what we do. Join me for one or more of these workshops for February – May. More information and registration on my Workshops page:

Practical Smartphone Photography
January 31
February 9
February 21

Basic Photoshop & Bridge
February 6

Senses & Perception: Portland, OR
March 6 – 8

Central Oregon Coast Workshop
April 14 – 21

Senses & Perception: Oregon Coast
April 22 – 24

Senses & Perception: Columbia River Gorge, OR
April 25 – 27

Senses & Perception: McCall, ID
May 8 – 10

Fall 2015

Scotland: Isle of Skye & Highlands
October 5 – 17

Long Exposure mini workshop, Sep 7, Twin Falls, ID

Long exposure mini workshop, Twin Falls, ID
Long exposure mini workshop, Twin Falls, ID

In this mini-workshop, learn the techniques and nuances of long exposure photography. We’ll cover exposure settings, looking for and predicting patterns, making long exposures in direct sunlight, in shade, late afternoon, and night, and we’ll spend time practicing the technique while photographing in the field. You’ll need a camera with manual exposure capability and a tripod. Optional equipment: remote shutter release, polarizer filter, full neutral density (ND) filters (ND filters will be available for you to use). We will meet for a short classroom discussion then go into the field. Our field location will be determined on the day of the workshop based on local conditions. Optional meeting afterwards for dinner, drinks, dessert, etc. and discussion.

To register: http://www.blueplanetphoto.com/dir/index.php/workshops/long-exposure-mini-workshop.html