The Art of Astronomy 1) Why do people find it hard to get into astronomy 2) How do you become an astronomer

Essay by mhenni7838High School, 12th gradeA+, October 2004

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The Art of Astronomy

Astronomy leaves many people frustrated and lost. Such experiences give people the impression that astronomy is a tough hobby to get into. Beginners looking to get into Astronomy would have much more success if the had a few simple steps and/or guidelines to help them along the way. Theses steps include tackling your local library. Astronomy is a learning hobby and you must become self-taught. Your local library is your most important tool in becoming an astronomer. Learn the sky with the naked-eye. Remember Astronomy is an outdoor nature hobby. Don't rush into buying a high powered expensive telescope either. To put a telescope to rewarding use, you must first know the sky with your own eyes. The most successful, lifelong astronomers are often the very ones who began with the least equipment. Start with a pair of binoculars as your first ideal telescope. They are fairly inexpensive, widely available and easy to carry with you.

If you have learned the detailed sky maps, binoculars can keep you busy for a lifetime. Binoculars can reveal most of the 110 "M objects", the start clusters, galaxies, and nebulae. Also find other amateur astronomers. Self-education is fine as far as it goes but sharing the interest with others is a much greater experience. When you feel you are ready to buy a telescope remember that the telescope you want has two essentials. One is a solid, steady, smooth working mount and the other is a high-quality optical lens. Most importantly you must lose your ego. Astronomy teaches patience and humility...and you better be prepared to learn them. Keep in mind the universe will not bend to your wishes; you must take it on its own terms. Finally remember to relax and have fun. Remember perfection doesn't exist,