Re: Sketching Method: (was (IAAC) Your deep sky projects)
Thanks for your responses to my enquiry. I have tried out using 8-inch circles and found that I like them quite well -- it is easier to position stars in the larger area. Or, rather, star position becomes a bit less critical.
As to shading, I'm not really satisfied with the level of detail captured in my sketches drawn under red-light -- other than general shape and perhaps the size and position of a core (if visible), most galaxies look about the same in the sketch. Drawing larger, more distended objects like the Swan Nebula is a different matter. But the idea of outlining all the elements and making notes about shading seems like a better technique, so I will be experiementing with that.
I've started making some lunar sketches: what a challenge! The exercise really does help me study the lunar surface more carefully, though.
I typically spend 10 to 20 minutes on a deep-sky drawing. A half hour would probably be my limit. I agree with Patrick on the diminishing return of spending more than about 20 minutes, unless the object is extremely detailed or you happen to be Stephen O'Meara. :-)