Bound by Starlight is the website of Scottish landscape photographer Stuart McIntyre.

Stuart prides himself in taking unique images of Scotland at night.

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rion Nebula Buachaille

Orion Nebula &Buachaille Etive Mor

rion Nebula Buachaille

This is the Orion Nebula and the peak of Buachaille Etive Mor. Dougie over at Leading Lines Photography had talked about the idea of taking this photo together however our schedules never met up sadly. I first took this photo on the 29th of October. I was not happy with the data I captured which was really frustrating as Transport Scotland had shut the road over night so the light pollution was exceptionally low. So I returned on the 8th of November to take more images, Then the moon cam and did its thing and then Dougie got his chance at a clear night, which I unfortunately could not attend which was a pity because I would still love to be able to change a few things. I’ll link Leading lines photo in the comments has his photo has a very different feel to mine.

This is stuff that I do know.

I took this photo this is taken at 400mm from the carpark… so no wild daft stories this time. It was just me and my dog Po that had found a bottle and literally spent the entire night happily chasing it around the car pack in the dark I remember all these posts from people worrying about hypothermia in dogs, it was about -2 with light wind) so I would invite him into my one man tent and he would just stare at me glumly until I let him out so he could continue to chase his bottle around the ground again (and yes I did take it back and throw it out, much to Po’s dismay! .

At that time of year I started imaging at midnight and tracked Orion across the sky until it came into this composition and then disappearing behind the mountain around 5.30am, I used the narrow band filter IDAS NB2 that images ionised oxygen at 500nm and Hydrogen Alpha at 656nm selectively. While I did capture some full wavelength images, I ended up really liking the effect the narrow band filter gives so ended up using just them.

Stuff that I don’t really know but If I parrot off from Wikipedia I’ll sound really smart. 

Orion nebula is evidently a 24 light year long collapsing gas cloud that is forming a star. A large part of my frustration of this image was trying to bring to life the intensity of the core which is so bright it is incredibly difficult not to loose all the information in the photo, but you can see the light reflecting from the gas clouds that are facing the centre of the nebula. I can see why M42 is one of the most photographed objects in the sky. It always shows something but yet there is always so much more to explore in this area of the sky.

Finally, I need to thank all the people who have ordered calendars. This year I’ve suffered design issues and print issues, It’s been an ongoing issue for the last month. But by the end of this week I will have sent out all the orders and they shall be perfect! I am very sorry you have had to have waited this long.