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NGC7380 Star cluster and Sh2-142 nebula in Cepheus - posted 8/25/06

As usual when imaging emission nebulae, I heavily supplemented the LUM channel with HA data that I also used as the red channel. I took the HA and color data for this shot with 10 minute exposures and the clear LUM with 3 minute subs. There are some bright stars in this field and I actually got several blooms in the clear channel even with 3 minute subs, along with a couple smaller blooms in the green channel. I also struggled with dewing that caused star softness and bloat in some of the HA data as well as with both the green and blue channels. So with those complications there was definitely some cleanup work to be done. I just purchased and read Ron Wodaski's wonderful text "Zone System for Astro Imaging" which I highly recommend. This is the first image I've completed using the techniques he describes. I'm sure that some of my previous practices were reducing contrast and dynamic range and I know his techniques will help my processing going forward.