Astrophotography of the night sky over Ontario, Canada, New Mexico, USA and Siding Spring, Australia

“Across the sea of space, the stars are other Suns” – Carl Sagan

My first image of M31 galaxy. Shawn Nielsen 2008

This was my first image ever taken upon getting into astrophotography. It was of the M31 galaxy and was taken with a Celestron CPC800 SCT. While I had taken some images as a teenager of the planets… 

For those of us living in a mid to large size cities and dealing with light pollution, we can do narrowband astrophotography and get some great results! One of the biggest challenges in astrophotography is dealing with light…  


A new awesome city astro filter! Triad Quadband Ultra Filter.

The Triad Quadband Ultra Filter from OPT is both amazing and fun to use. For many amateur astronomers and astrophotographers, light pollution
Read More
polluting the night with light

Dr. Emily Fobert; polluting the night with light

Dr Emily Fobert delivering the Flinders University #EcologyandEvolution public lecture: ‘Polluting the night with light’ “So even today in a landscape of plastic pollution
Read More
Iris nebula in Cepheus 26 hours of data. By Shawn Nielsen.

26 hours of data on the Iris Nebula

Meet the Iris Nebula in Cepheus. Also known as NGC 7023. This image represents 26 hours of data taken over 7 clear
Read More
Starfest 2019

I went to the Starfest 2019 star party!

I went to Starfest 2019 which is an annual star party held in Ayton, Ontario during the month of August. It’s considered
Read More

Optolong L-eNhance Filter for Astrophotography

The Optolong L-eNhance filter is fast becoming the talk of the astro town. It’s affordable for even the tightest astro budgets but
Read More

Deepsky astrophotography with and without a narrowband filter

City lights, neighbours outside lights, limited number of clear nights and astrophotography from your backyard, all mean having to battle not only
Read More

Shawn Nielsen VisibleDark.caWelcome to my astronomy and astrophotography site. I’m Shawn Nielsen and I’m an amateur astronomer, astrophotographer and YouTuber. I’m also an advocate for better lighting at night, reducing light pollution. The astro images featured on this website were taken from various locations including dark sites in rural southern Ontario, up in northern cottage country (South Bruce Peninsula) as well as remote observatories in New Mexico, Australia and Spain. Some of the images were even taken from my home in Kitchener, a relatively light polluted city. Astrophotography is a passion of mine Continue reading…