Catchers of the Light Books


"This book is truly a magnum opus, a labour of love, and a great work of scholarship. It is authoritative, detailed, thorough, superbly illustrated, well referenced, and all-encompassing. There is no nook or cranny of the history of astronomical photography or its proponents that has not been investigated, noted, and embellished with a relevant image. It is worth every single cent of its price. It is an essential addition to every astronomy library. Anyone with even a vague interest in the development of astrophysics will need to have this book to hand; it is a vital and reliable starting place for any historical research into the last two centuries of astronomical endeavour." Professor David W. Hughes, 'Observatory' magazine, February 2015. Read Full Review Here:

Solar System Astrophotography
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Catchers of the Light  >  IV - Solar System Astrophotography
IV - Solar System Astrophotography
Mars, 1909; Mars in Colour, Robert Leighton, 1956; 60-inch Reflector, Mount Wilson
"The only recorded photograph is one taken by Mr. Usherwood on Walton Common with a stationary camera furnished with a portrait lens of short focus.... We must content ourselves with noting the fact that Mr. Usherwood’s was the first photograph taken of a comet."
Edward Herbert Grove-Hills (1864-1922)
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IV.0 Solar System Astrophotography
Includes all five chapters on 'Solar System Astrophotography', i.e. John Adams Whipple, William Usherwood, Paul Henry & Prosper Henry, Max Wolf and Imaging the Solar System. Buy at a discounted price.
Part IV

IV.1 John Adams Whipple
John Adams Whipple, was an early pioneer of photography in America, as well as one of the first Astrophotographers, who took some of the earliest images of a planet.

IV.2 William Usherwood
William Usherwood, was a miniature artist and 'wedding & baby' photographer who much to the annoyance of the astronomical community, became the first person to successfully image a Comet.

IV.3 Pierre Paul Henry & Mathieu Prosper Henry
Pierre Paul Henry and his younger brother, Mathieu Prosper Henry, were 'inseparable' and as such became two of the finest Astrophotographers and telescope builders of all time.

IV.4 Maximilian Franz Joseph Cornelius Wolf
Max Wolf, was a German astronomer who was the first person to discover an asteroid with the aid of photography. At the time the number of these objects had become so large that they had been dubbed the 'vermin of the sky'.

IV.5 Imaging the Solar System
Imaging the bodies of our solar system proved an even bigger challenge to astronomers than objects millions of light years away.

Imaging the diverse bodies to found in our Solar System, its planets, asteroids, comets, natural satellites and meteors proved to be a difficult challenge for the pioneers of Astrophotography.

Dr. Stefan Hughes began his career as a professional astronomer, gaining a 1st Class Honours degree in Astronomy from the University of Leicester in 1974 and his PhD four years later on the 'Resonance Orbits of Artificial Satellites due to Lunisolar Perturbations', which was published as a series of papers in the Proceedings of the Royal Society of London. After graduating he became a Research fellow in Astronomy, followed by a spell as a lecturer in Applied Mathematics at Queen Mary College, London. Then came a ten year long career as an IT Consultant. In 'mid life' he spent several years retraining as a Genealogist, Record Agent and Architectural Historian, which he practiced for a number of years before moving to the Mediterranean island of Cyprus, where for the past ten years he has been imaging the heavens, as well as researching and writing the 'Catchers of the Light' - A History of Astrophotography.

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