(If this is a composite, etc. please be honest with your techniques to help others learn)
I hadn’t looked closely enough at the categories and didn’t realize there was one for celestial until I saw @Richard_Teller’s stunning diamond ring! That inspired me to jump in with my version of the 2017 total eclipse. I hoped to do a blended exposure to bring out the dim detail far out into the corona. I had a tracker but not a short telescope, so shot it with the Canon 400 DO II and my Canon 1DX Mk II. The amount of lens flare at the longer exposures prevented me from getting as much detail as I had hoped for in the outer reaches of the corona, but the results were successful enough to reward the effort. I had shot the star field 6 months earlier, when that exact portion of the sky was in darkness, with the same camera and lens. The longest exposures for the corona revealed the two most prominent stars near the sun at eclipse, which let me line up the star field accurately. Lens flare prevented a good capture of the earthshine detail we could see, so I composited it also, but now I see the version I posted doesn’t have it.
Clouds the night before prevented polar alignment of the tracker so I had to rely on my iPhone’s indication of north, but it was accurate enough for the few minutes of totality and kept the sun in the frame for the duration of the partial phases. It was luck the clouds parted on eclipse morning, rewarding the two day journey to get to a hoped-for clear area. It was a spectacular experience I hope to be able to repeat in April of 2024.
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Thanks guys! I see now that my post wasn’t the final version – not sure how I grabbed that one, but here is the final, with earthshine included. It just showed in the longest exposures but was too washed out from the bright inner corona to be usable, so I had to add it from a different full moon shot. The washed out one did show the crater Tycho almost straight down, so the orientation of the detail is correct. In the first version I had also neglected to smooth out the star on the right (Nu Leonis). That lens gives a bright star a strange jagged appearance. I had smoothed out Regulus, on the left, and made it a bit smaller in this final version.
Well this is is a pretty extraordinary image, including the starfield in a composite like this makes it pretty unique, and it has more visual interest for me from an artistic perspective. It sounds like you you put a lot of technical effort into this shot as well, and it certainly paid off for you. A small touch that I like here is that the star on the left is blue-ish, and the one on the right is more reddish, it creates an interesting look.