A north-east photographer is waiting for the right moment to capture the Milky Way – and in the meantime has snapped a nebula over his home.
Mark Coull, 34, is a multimedia designer who has been a photographer in his spare time for the past two years.
After waiting for the right weather, he was able to capture the Orion Nebula over his home two nights ago.
Mark said: “There was a break in the clouds where I live in Stonehaven so I just went outside with my camera, tripod and star tracker and set it up using a 55-200mm lens.
“I just aimed at the Orion Nebula, because you could see the Orion constellation in the sky and it was fairly clear.
“The Orion was quite bright in the sky at this time of year. I clicked and just waited and took twenty shots of the Nebula.”
The Nebula is situated in the Milky Way which is Mark’s big goal for the next few months. He used a star tracker tool for his camera to capture such a clear image.
“I only got my star tracker a couple of months ago but the weather’s been so rubbish, the hazards of living in the north-east of Scotland I guess, that I only really started using it a week ago.
“A star tracker is an instrument your put your camera on and it moves with the Earth’s rotation so it allows you to use longer exposure times…without the star tracker I wouldn’t have been able to achieve this.”
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He added: “I can’t wait to get out of Stonehaven and actually take (a picture of) the Orion Nebula with very little light pollution.
“My goal this year, over the next two to three months, is to get the Milky Way above the Dunnottar Castle so I’m working up to that by getting used to using the star tracker.”
However, the north-east’s temperamental weather may be an issue for the talented photographer.
Mark said: “It’s going to be all dependent on the weather. It’s the biggest thing I’ve found photographing the night sky over Dunnottar Castle.
“I’m quite confident I can get the Milky Way…It’s just waiting for the right weather conditions.”
Find Mark’s photography page on Facebook, here.