It were a great night out at the dark sky site. You could see all the leaves floating in the Teapot, the Milky Way was plainly visible, my new 130mm scope (aka HUb'ble III) was pulling detail out of Mars (hmmm...larger eyepiece + barlow = easier viewing than small eyepiece...how interesting...), and I was picking the brains of the local astrophotography experts. An extremely productive evening.
I was shooting the breeze (not to be confused with passing gas) with the club president, picking up some details on viewing filters. He threw me something and said to check it out. Turns out it was a sample pack from a theatrical gel filter manufacturer. Hundreds of colors, and each one had a paper tab giving specs including a graph of its spectroscopic blocking/transmission qualities. Just find the one you want, and hold it over the end of the eyepiece as you gaze...
The numerous intermediate steps available give lots of choices of just how much contrast to play with, and the availability of colors other than standard give much room for experimentation. I was impressed with the idea.
Here's a thread in a board that discusses the topic:
This page discusses filters in general and their applications to astro-viewing...(I think I'm printing this one out for my stash of reference material in the toolbox...):
I did a Dogpile search for "gel color filter sample packs", and got some hits. You may spend a couple of bucks, but hey, ya get large quantites of stuff...do a search with similar terms on other search engines and you'll get other hits:
($4.00 for a sample book)
(the website shows a sample book -- inquire about its availability)
(an e-mail link to request a swatchbook of filters -- "Request a Rosco Swatch Book" -- and a listing with colors of some of the filters)
(for our brethren and sistern across the pond, this firm is located in Jolly Olde)
(firm's home page)
(swatch book page)
(here's the US homepage)
(US swatch book page)
(this one gives the spectrographic info of each filter color)
That oughtta be enough to keep folk occupied for awhile...[trundles off in search of that astrophotography exposure program John mentioned last night]...