2010 12 20 Lunar Aureole Sketch

Sketch created sitting on the steps under the skylight window of our house roof. Media: Black Strathmore Artagain paper and Conte’ pastel crayons.

Links to Aureole Archives from PCW.

Excerpt from a previous post:

Light is diffracted by tiny droplets of water in the atmosphere creating these beautiful scenes. The droplet size, shape, and light wavelength all determine the outcome of the corona. The smaller the water droplets in the atmosphere, the larger the diameter of the ring around the Moon or the Sun.

Talking about the upcoming lunar eclipse yesterday evening with my husband, Paul, I thought the date at that time was the 20th. There was a thin layer of overcast, which meant no telescope viewing but certainly good enough to watch the lunar eclipse…if only yesterday were indeed the 20th! I had gone to bed and read for awhile before I convinced myself that I could get through a day of work with only a few hours’ sleep. After putting on my slippers and heating up the tea kettle, I walked down to the observatory to retrieve my sketching gear. When I got back to the house, I was pleased to see that I had a perfect view of the Moon, clouds and all, through the skylight on our house roof. If my luck held out, I could do a naked eye observation of the Moon in the warmth of the house.

I wanted to sketch the eclipse so thought I could do a quick practice run on the lunar aureole that put on a display through the clouds. It was only after I completed the sketch and checked the date on my computer that I realized I was a day early!

Maybe tomorrow night the clouds will be kind for viewing the actual eclipse. In the mean time, I’ll just have to settle for a “golden crown of light.”


~ by Erika Rix on December 20, 2010.

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