International Competition for the best amateur astrophoto. Presented by David Malin (Chairman), Greg Parker and Noel Carboni
The first ever astrophoto is attributed to John William Draper, who photographed the Moon in 1840. His son, Henry Draper, later became the first person to photograph the Orion Nebula in 1880, which was essentially the first deep sky astrophoto. Amateurs are now producing spectacular results with standard photographic CCD cameras and inexpensive astro CCD cameras.
David Malin pioneered the making of true-colour astronomical photographs from black and white plates taken with three separate coloured filters. His photographs have been widely published and have been on the covers of hundreds of books and magazines, including LIFE and National Geographic. His work also graces a series of Australian postage stamps. International solo art exhibitions of his work have been held in Australia, Britain, China, France, Italy, India and the USA. Malin has published more than 120 scientific papers, a similar number of popular articles on astronomy and photography, and seven books. He is a popular lecturer and has received many international awards and two honorary doctorate degrees from Australian universities for his contributions to photographic science and astronomy.
Greg Parker is Professor of Photonics at the University of Southampton, Hampshire, UK. Previously, Greg worked in the semiconductor industry for 12 years and for 3 years in his university spin-off company Mesophotonics Ltd. Greg is interested in absolutely everything to do with light, and that includes photography. His first degree was in Physics, Mathematics and Astronomy at the University of Sussex, where he obtained First Class Honours in 1978. Greg was given a little refractor at age 8 and has been looking skywards every since. Greg started deep-sky imaging in September 2004 and teamed up with digital image processing guru Noel Carboni in spring 2005. Greg and Noel have worked together as a team ever since and published their first book of deep-sky images, Star Vistas, with Springer in 2009.
Noel Carboni is a software engineer and entrepreneur who has spent his career developing reliable and high performance software. Since the early 1990s, he has developed his prowess with Photoshop and all things digital and graphic. Over time, he developed a library of techniques for producing award-winning digital images, and it dawned on him that the tools that enabled him to be successful in processing images could be marketed to others. Now, people worldwide use Noel’s Phtotoshop add-on software to process their images. One of his most successful products is a set of actions called Astronomy Tools. Noel has produced some ground-breaking lunar imagery with his Meade camera.