Venus rising by Jason Dain
Venus rising by Jason Dain

Venus rising by Jason Dain

February 11, 2022’s Photo of the Week prize goes to Jason Dain, who captured Venus rising on a chilly −20 C morning

February 11, 2022’s Photo of the Week prize goes to Jason Dain, who captured Venus rising on a chilly −20 C morning.

Venus rising by Jason Dain
Venus rising by Jason Dain

Jason Dain said he felt an urge to photograph the Milky Way during the wee hours of February 1, 2022, so he set out for Bayswater, Nova Scotia, to begin shooting. Arriving at his desired location around 5:15 a.m., Dain said he began taking test shots and was waiting for the Milky Way to rise high enough to photograph.

After taking shots of the Milky Way, he noticed the scene in this week’s winning submission just over his shoulder, and even though the sky was beginning to brighten, and despite it being astronomical twilight, Dain said he thought to give it a shot.

The result is a breathtaking photo of the planet Venus rising above the horizon in Bayswater, hovering just above a row of trees and surrounding wilderness. Venus is Earth’s closest planetary neighbour, and is a bright target to photograph, and as Dain said, “its thick clouds reflect most of the sunlight that hits it back into space.”

Dain stacked eight shots of the image in Sequator, and processed it in Photoshop to achieve the final result.

Honourable mention

Horsehead and Flame Nebulae by Stuart Heggie | SkyNews
Horsehead and Flame Nebulae by Stuart Heggie

This week’s honourable mention goes to Stuart Heggie, who captured the Horsehead Nebula (Barnard 33) and the nearby Flame Nebula (NGC 2024). Both are found in the constellation Orion.

Located 1,500 light-years away from Earth, the Horsehead Nebula (found slightly below the centre of the photo) gets its distinct shape from intense radiation from a nearby star that’s blowing on the dark cloud.

“This area responds very strongly in Hydrogen-alpha, but there are other complex processes going on that make for interesting contrasts, including the reflection component underneath the Horsehead,” he wrote in his submission.

Heggie used a Moravian G4 camera along with an AP155 telescope (f/7) to capture the image. Total integration time was about 14 hours in January 2022, and he shot from Lucknow, Ontario.

Every week, SkyNews publishes the best image from among those sent in by readers from all across Canada. Whether you’re an expert or a beginner at night sky photography, we’re looking for your pictures! Enter today for your chance to win a Photo of the Week title and one of our annual prizes!

Prizes for the 2021-22 SkyNews Photo of the Week contest are sponsored by Sky-Watcher, Celestron, iOptron, The Royal Astronomical Society of Canada and SkyNews. Find out more about the amazing telescopes, prize packages and gift vouchers awarded to the best photos this year.

Get a Free Digital Issue