Planetary Imaging on a Time Budget
A good reason to never overlook our own little corner of the universe is that we can see many of its places of interest so readily and in such detail. We should never forget that within the solar system are destinations we can “visit” and comprehend in “Earth terms.” They are close enough to allow us at least a small idea of their true nature, in full color, and in relative vividness at that! Furthermore, we can do it in real time; visual astronomy offers immediacy, which ties significantly into the thrust of this book.
Nevertheless, you may wish to produce some imagery of what you have seen and so might be interested in some of the methods presented here. There is also a need to illustrate what can be seen at the eyepiece, which was the underlying and primary reason for their inclusion. The planetary images in this book were made more as a result of time at the eyepiece than any particular passion to spend it in front of a computer screen or in a photographic darkroom. The fact that effective imagery may be obtained very quickly and easily, and certainly without huge technical expertise, makes the various simple approaches outlined here even more applicable to our purposes. It would make little sense in a volume such as this to recommend that you spend the countless hours required to take part effectively in the standard types of imaging used by many enthusiasts today.