2012 12 19 – 5.76 Day-Old Moon

I had every intention on sketching the Double Cluster as my first target of the night. It would have been a marathon session and by the time the faintest stars needed to be added, the Moon would have been long set. However, once I saw how beautiful the Moon was, I went back in the house to grab my lunar sketch kit and black paper.

2012 12 19, 0115 UT – 0250 UT 5.76-day old Moon
Erika Rix, Texas – http://www.pcwobservatory.com
AT6RC f/9 1370mm, LXD75, Hyperion 8-24mm Mark III, no filter, 57x
52F, 55% H, clear/calm, Antoniadi III with moments of I, T 2/6
Alt: 32deg 33, Az: 244deg 57´
Phase: 103degrees, Lunation: 5.76 d, Illumination: 38.7%
Lib. Lat: -06:11, Lib. Long: +06.53

It took me three attempts to begin the sketch as the first craters I added, Theophilus, Cyrillus, and Catharina, were drawn too large each time – this meant that all the other lunar features were disproportionately too close to each other and too small. By the third attempt, those initial craters were good enough to allow me to continue with the remainder of the sketch.

Earthshine was just bright enough to slightly lighten the non-illuminated portion of the Moon. No lunar features in that area could be seen, but what little bit of earthshine there was cast enough light to make out the entire globe rather than the crescent alone. The tips of the lunar terrain were very bright and opened up in front of my eyes as the terminator advanced. Those were the first features to be sketched after the initial earthshine and backdrop of the crescent was added to the paper. The tonal variances in the remainder of the sketch were added next followed by alternating the white Conte’ pastel pencil and gray charcoal pencil to depict the lunar features further in from the terminator.


Eyepiece sketch on black Strathmore Artagain paper, white Conte’ crayon and pencil, Derwent watercolor pencil, black charcoal, black oil pencil.


~ by Erika Rix on December 19, 2012.

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