Astronomy Sketching is a very popular, rewarding and in-expensive method in documenting your views. And no, you don’t have to be an artist to achieve all the examples shown here. Personally I can’t draw a straight line with a ruler and even I was able to achieve nice sketches.
At it’s most frugal, all that is required is a piece of paper and pencil. And at it’s most costly you can purchase a dedicated sketch book and artist pencils, pastels and some brushes. You can even use black paper which renders a more realistic background. Think this method is not that eye appealing? Then look at these!
Please Note - All of the following sketches are of actual views through owners telescopes.
Another enjoyable sketching method is the Melish Technique. This process was developed by a fine Australian Astronomy Sketcher, Scott Melish. His technique blended white pastels and white pencils. With the pastels you dry brush the areas of nebulosity thereby creating a realistic image. Again, these methods are not difficult.
Alex Massey, also from Australia has mastered this technique and developed some amazing looking sketches. Notice the attention to detail.
Please note - the the first two sketches of nebula are using the Melish Technique which constitutes a soft, dry brush technique. The Lunar Sketches are strong and highly detailed sketches using pencils.
You can see much more of Alex's artistry at this link: http://alexanderastrosketching.blogspot.com/
To take this sketching a step further you can add another inexpensive option...white pencils with black paper to your creativity. The black paper gives a more realistic background.
Another gratifying “spin-off” of Astronomy, is Sketching of what viewers see through their binoculars or telescopes.
The following Lunar/Solar Sketches belong to another talented 'sketcher", Cindy Krach. Cindy resides in Hawaii and is currently the coordinator of the Astro League Sketching Programs. https://www.astroleague.org/programs/sketching-observing-award
You can see many of her fine sketches at the Astronomy Forum Sketch Site. Notice the detail in these sketches also.
Click any photo to Enlarge
The Melish Technique can even be used with color pastels. This method gives extra pizzazz to your sketches. However, most sketchers use white pastels, as this best represents what they see through their optical instruments.
The following examples belong to the author and are purely fantasy galaxy's.
Sketch Photo Sketch Photo
Some sketches are so good that they resemble actual photograph's.
White Pencil on Black Paper