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Growing up I had the Grandfather on my mother's side and my Father's brother both were into photography and I enjoyed the stuff they did with it. I did some photography but didn't have much of a camera. That Grandfather got some optics from an army surplus store and made his own refractor telescope when I was 8 years old. I still remember my first views of Jupiter with four of it's moons and Saturn's rings through that telescope, which I now have. I saved and bought a small 40mm refractor from a pawn shop about a year later. I used that telescope to look at the Moon, Saturn , and Jupiter. I didn't do much astronomy once I was in high school through my mid 30s -- too many hobbies. Once my twins were 6, they started really showing interest in that sort of stuff, even asking the family to plan around their being able to watch Steven Hawkings' universe program on TV. I knew of the OKC Astronomy club and decided to start taking the twins to that. It rekindled my interest and now astronomy is my main hobby. I finally got a Pentax K1000 SLR and started shooting film wide field astro shots with that along with getting more into daytime photography. I started shooting with a DSLR in 2007. Being out doing astronomy away from town has given my many chances to do wildlife photography, so the two have gone hand in hand quite well for me. Many of the times before and/or after doing astrophotography, I take the DSLR and walk about the friend's land where  I setup the telescope. One of my favorites from doing that was getting a picture of twin fawns nursing from about 30 yards away.

For the program, I will show the steps in equipment I've used and results I got along the way. I'll do some discussion on the image processing as it is some different that daytime photo processing (exposure stacking and the need for Dark frames and Flat frames as example) and the software for that but won't go too deep into that as it could be a whole subject by itself. After we come back from taking a break, I'll discuss some of the things that are available for people to do wide field astrophotography (barndoor tracker and commercially available camera trackers) , which is the best path for getting started on astrophotography then answer questions..

August 14, 2017
Dennis Wigley