Jupiter and Venus Rising Before the Sun
Right now, Jupiter and Venus are rising in the early morning hours just before dawn. I went outside on the morning of the 4th of July and saw Jupiter and Venus right next to each other with the Pleiades (The Seven Sisters) just above them and knew that the next morning I was going to have to get up early and set up my tripod to try and capture what I saw. I used my Panasonic GH2 with the stock zoom lens set to about 40 to 50 mm equivalent and with the aperture open to about f/5. I set my ISO to 400 and took a 15 second exposure . The foreground was lit by moonlight and light from a rapidly scanned flashlight. In the picture you can see a very bright Venus surrounded by several bright stars. Many of these stars are members of the large open cluster of Hyades. The second brightest object is Jupiter which is above Venus. At the very top of the image is the Pleiades open star cluster. I was really happy to see how this picture turned out. I'm looking forward to morning of july 15th when Venus and Jupiter will be closer together and they will be joined by a thin crescent Moon.
For a larger version of this you can go to my photography page here.