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Contains:  M 8, Lagoon nebula, Hourglass nebula, NGC 6523, NGC 6526, The star 9Sgr
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Messier 8's: "The Hourglass" (One Year of AP), 


            John Michael Bell...
Messier 8's: "The Hourglass" (One Year of AP)

Messier 8's: "The Hourglass" (One Year of AP)

Technical card

Resolution: 6334x4534

Dates:June 21, 2019June 22, 2019

Optolong L-eNhance 2": 85x120" (gain: 150.00) -10C bin 1x1
Optolong L-eNhance 2": 64x100" (gain: 150.00) -15C bin 1x1

Integration: 4.6 hours

Darks: ~36

Flats: ~30

Bias: ~300

Avg. Moon age: 19.10 days

Avg. Moon phase: 80.03%

Bortle Dark-Sky Scale: 7.00 job: 2759597

RA center: 270.932 degrees

DEC center: -24.378 degrees

Pixel scale: 0.182 arcsec/pixel

Orientation: 320.211 degrees

Field radius: 0.197 degrees

Locations: Backyard, Tucson, Arizona, United States

Data source: Backyard


INTRODUCTION & BACKGROUNN- One of the best parts about being a teacher is having the summers off. A little over a year ago I decided to commit to a new hobby, I spent all of last summer learning about amature astrophotography, building my first imaging setup, and taking my first images through a telescope. It was an amazing and productive 3 months. Having all that dedicated time allowed me to become fully invested in the difficult process of imaging the cosmos. It is now a year later and I wanted to celebrate by sharing something that I really could be proud of. Most nights I can collect enough data to put together a decent photo. However, I wanted to capture something special this time, something that was new that challenging. I also wanted to integrate everything that I've learned this past year through tons of research, practice, meticulous & frustrating troubleshooting, trial & error, and the help & support from you guys; the Astrobin community. This image features the core region of my second favorite DSO, Messier 8. I recently shared my true color image of the large Lagoon nebula which is a common target for Astrophotographers. However, these wide view images never seemed to do justice for me especially after being blown away by Hubble's 28th anniversary release of the Hourglass within M8 ( The structures and detail within this area are much smaller and difficult to resolve. The glaring full moon also posed a challenge by restricting me to narrowband imaging, something I have never tried or was even equipped yet to attempt. I decided to try using a new dual band pass filter with my OSC camera to acquire the data needed to create this image. I had strictly used the Optolong L-pro filter for the past year and after my first night using the L-eNhance it because apparent that I would have to completely revise my usual acquisition and post processing work flow process. After a week of trial and error in both of these stages I finally got it! So I am happy to share with you guys, my "One Year of Astrophotography" image, "The Hourglass".

Thanks everyone for your love and support,
John Michael Bellisario



John Michael Bell...
License: Attribution Creative Commons


  • Messier 8's: "The Hourglass" (One Year of AP), 


            John Michael Bell...
  • Final
    Messier 8's: "The Hourglass" (One Year of AP), 


            John Michael Bell...


Brightness & color adjustment for astrobin viewing

Sky plot

Sky plot


Messier 8's: "The Hourglass" (One Year of AP), 


            John Michael Bell...