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Why astrophotography?

There is not a single reason to explain my dedication to Astrophotography. In the past I really enjoyed using Kodak Tecnical Pan film (as known as TP). Even though I begun shooting colour film circa 1996 -specifically Kodak PJM-640 & LE400-, when I discover the resolving power of Technical Pan I put all my efforts to develop all the techniques needed to use this subtle film (by the way, did you notice the large forming gas bottle in the picture?). After some years working in that way, I realised that I did not only enjoy shooting TP, but also applying and mastering all these techniques like film hypersensitization, chemical processing, knife-edge focusing or the extremely accurate guiding required by TP to show the beauty of the universe as no other film can did. Nowadays I enjoy using a monochrome CCD, shooting with Luminance and narrowband H-alpha filters (though lately I am also playing with RGB filters). From other side, I really like the adventure of discover new places far away from civilization, looking for dark skies and optimum seeing conditions. In this way, northwest Catalonia offers the best places I have experienced due to its particular climatic and environmental conditions. Specially remarkable are the seeing conditions (often around 1 arcsec) I observe in the large plateaus halfway to the top of the Catalonian Pyrenees where the meditarrenean pine seems to cover the mountains beyond the horizon. There, more than 1500 meters in elevation, under a brilliant and well-structured milky way over a truly dark background sky, I sometimes feel astrophotography is just another way to be in close contact to the nature.

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