Astrophotography is a rewarding pastime, one that blends art and technical know-how with an in-depth understanding of astronomy. But it’s one of the most complex forms of photography, which means it has a steep learning curve. So even if you spend thousands on the finest equipment and software, you won’t get far unless you know how to set up and use your equipment and process your images.
To help aspiring imagers avoid the frustration of learning astrophotography, I offer a series of dedicated “one-on-one” tutorial sessions that vastly decrease the time you need to invest to take top-quality astronomical images. During these sessions, no matter what your current skill level, I personally guide you through every step of capturing and processing your own images of the finest objects in the night sky. I show you how to:
- Select and purchase the best equipment and software you need for astrophotography according to your budget and interests
– Choose a CMOS, CCD or DSLR camera for imaging, and understand the pros and cons of each technology
– Correctly set up your equatorial mount and align it to the poles for optimum tracking, and develop the best approach for guiding during your exposures.
– Set up and configure your camera and accessories to acquire images
– Calibrate and stack images using off-the-shelf software
– Determine the correct settings and tools for shooting the Moon, star clusters, nebulae and galaxies.
– Develop strategies and techniques for post processing using Photoshop and other image processing software.
You will learn some of these subjects– or all of them– according to your interests and skill level. During the tutorial sessions, you’ll learn at your own pace and get a chance to ask as many questions as you like to ensure you understand the subject matter. Since personally I guide you through each step of acquiring and processing images, you’ll save hundreds of hours fussing or freezing in the dark and messing around with post-processing software.
These one-on-one tutorial sessions are held using Skype and free remote desktop software such as Teamviewer so I can show you exactly how to capture and process images, just as if I were sitting at the computer with you. All you need is a computer and internet connection…we can even hold the sessions while you process your images, or even while you’re capturing images with your telescope!
My tutorials includes three months of unlimited one-on-one support using remote desktop, along with voice calls by Skype for students anywhere in the world. The charge for three months of private astrophotography tutorials and unlimited support is just $400.00 US. Given that a decent camera for astrophotography may cost a thousand dollars or more, this tuition for learning how to use your camera, telescope, and software is very reasonable indeed.
And by the end of the three months of tutorials, you will be far from being an expert but you will have a number of images to share with your friends and family, your astronomy club, or with the wider world on your website.
For more details how to sign up for your own series of astrophotography tutorials, contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or give me a call at 231-206-1141.
One more thing… I’ve held these one-on-one tutorial sessions with dozens of aspiring astrophotographers, from complete beginners to experienced imagers. Have a look below for some comments and sample images from a few of my past students…
Thank you for visiting.
I offer my tutorial, consisting of three months of private astrophotography lessons, email and telephone support, for $400.00 US. or recurring payment of $140.00 monthly.(scroll down to the subscribe section) The tutorial includes one-on-one remote sessions that are limited to a maximum of one 1.5 hour long session each week and which must be used within the 3 month tutorial period, unless prior arrangements are made. The tutorial package also includes one-on-one support for those 3 months using Teamviewer (remote desktop), voice calls via Skype, e-mail, and telephone support for students anywhere in the world. I am also available for hire on an hourly basis $50.00 US per hour for anything relating to Astrophotography such as Hardware and Software Troubleshooting, Pre and Post Processing, advice on purchasing and setting up equipment.
I also offer my tutorial, consisting of private astrophotography lessons, email and telephone support, for a recurring payment of $140.00 monthly. The tutorial includes one-on-one remote sessions that are limited to a maximum of one 1.5 hour long session each week and which must be used within the monthly tutorial period, unless prior arrangements are made. The tutorial package includes one-on-one support using Teamviewer (remote desktop), voice calls via Skype, e-mail, and telephone support for students anywhere in the world. I am also available for hire on an hourly basis $50.00 US per hour for anything relating to Astrophotography such as Hardware and Software Troubleshooting, Pre and Post Processing, advice on purchasing and setting up equipment.
There are two things that I believe that all astrophotographers have in common. We understand the word frustration and we all have a graveyard full of used hardware and software. In July 2018, my windows 98 system was ready for an overhaul and my mount refused to carry my image train any longer. It was time to retire both but I thought that I could at least keep my existing software. Later I realized that the only package that I could keep was Photoshop and that was the piece of software that I barely used due to its complexity. I felt totally “Frustrated” and of course my graveyard just kept getting bigger.
In August, I met Tolga from Tolga Astro and he helped me select, purchase and install my mount from Software Bisque. Tolga had earned my trust. He had delivered as promised a properly installed Paramount and had it up and running in one day with a working model.
Tolga highly recommended Terry Hancock and felt that Terry’s three month one-on-one tutorials would be an ideal fit. So Tolga introduced me to Terry and I took the next leap of faith. Terry and I had a number of emails and phone calls. He convinced me that I should drop my focuser software, stacker and calibration software and move to PixInsight and that I should keep Photoshop. “O Joy”, at 71 years of age I was starting over from scratch.
Before working with Terry, I felt I had some good images. After working with Terry, I am blown away with how much I have accomplished and how I have grown in my processing techniques using PixInsight and Photoshop.
“Terry, you exceeded my expectations in your one-on-one Tutorials. It was very enjoyable and you set the right pace for me in that you took your time to explain two very complicated pieces of software, PixInsight and Photoshop. You have a very natural presentation style that is easy to follow and full of great detailed information. I made the right decision when I took that leap of faith of starting over and I highly recommend your services to any astrophotographers that want to improve their imaging and processing skills. I look forward to our future sessions”.
I want to thank you for working with me over the past few months. The fruits of your patient teaching have resulted in me gaining the confidence to be able to reach this level of experience. I'm really very pleased and excited as this is something I was struggling with before you started working with me. I would encourage anyone who wants to work with a master astrophotographer to sign up for your training classes, I believe they will get as much out of them as I have
I wanted to share my image of M31 with the subscription to System 4 at Grand Mesa Observatory Subscriptions. This has been processed using the training you've given in Pixinsight and Photoshop.
While searching for sites online that included astronomical images taken with the QHY9 CCD, I stumbled across Terry’s website. I had purchased my QHY9 about 6 months prior and was fairly happy with it. However, I wanted to read on the experiences of other owners of the QHY9 and maybe pick up on any tips so I could improve my own image taking.
After reviewing Terry’s images and reading their description, I was impressed by Terry’s work with the QHY9 and other hardware. I decided to contact Terry; although, I wasn’t expecting to get a reply as maybe I thought he would be too busy with his work, etc. To my surprise, Terry replied fairly quickly. We exchanged several emails where we compared experiences with the QHY9 and processing techniques. Even though I don’t consider myself a novice in the art of astrophotography, I still have a lot to learn and improve and am always looking for better ways to accomplish the required tasks of pre and post processing of my images. Although, Terry was graceful enough to answer my questions, I decided to pay for the Tuition that Terry offers in his site. I knew that I may not use in the same way that others would but at least this allowed me not to feel guilty as I kept on asking questions and wanted to compensate Terry for some of the knowledge transfer.
I have nothing but praises for Terry’s guidance, I was able to correct some things I was doing the hard or wrong way and base on his advice I acquired better software which also allowed me to work quickly with better results. I am looking forward to continue to develop my techniques, both on Image taking and processing. Terry and I keep on corresponding and I was privilege to go to some of his lectures and presentations, I am glad to count him as a dear friend now. I highly recommend Terry’s Tuition to anybody passionate about Astrophotography, no matter what level you are in.
I cannot recommend the course offered by Terry enough! Learning processing tricks from him in Photoshop has breathed new life into older data sets and makes sure any new data I acquire will be processed to produce the best images possible with my setup. On top of processing help Terry also lends his students his extensive knowledge and resources for technical help with your setup, from guiding help to figuring out the best capture settings for the targets you want to shoot. Comparing the images I produced before I signed up and after is a total night and day difference. All in all if you are looking for a course to take to further your trek into Astrophotography this is the one, especially if you have/prefer Photoshop for processing. What makes it even better is that above all Terry is a really nice guy that is in this hobby for all of the right reasons, he only wants to share what he has learned with people to better their pursuit toward amazing Astrophotos. THANKS TERRY
J A Y H O V N A N I AN T E S T I M O N I A L
Hello, I am Jay from Massachusetts. After a long pause, I re-entered the world of Astrophotography (albeit with only a knowledge of ancient means and methods).
With a strong desire, all I needed was to learn the new mechanical technologies ... or so I thought ….
Lights and Darks and Flats and filters and stacking and stretching …. I really had no idea what I was doing, and my initial results showed that. An Astro acquaintance mentioned Terry’s personal mentoring and told me that he would definitely help. So, I reached out and introduced myself. Terry and I talked a bit and I bought into his three-month package.
I am now in my third round with Terry and in all sincerity, it would be awfully hard to adequately describe in brief how much he has taught me. Astrophotography is a wonderful synthesis of science, technology and art, and has long been a passion, but I simply did not know how much I did not know.
I honestly consider that Terry has reduced my learning curve by years (and it may just be that I would have never figured it out alone). The man is a veritable wellspring of knowledge. More importantly, he possesses the desire and ability to share with others. He understands equipment ... knows the sky ... and has advised on the differing approaches in capturing deep sky objects. My greatest benefit, though, has been in what he is teaching me about processing. I can only say, “Thank you Terry.” I look forward to what my second year back into Astrophotography will bring.
Let me just start this by saying that finding Terry was a happy accident. Nobody introduced us, I just saw his Facebook page, looked around, liked what I saw and decided to contact him. I am very new to this hobby, less than 2 years since I bought my first telescope and on my first anniversary I decided I wanted to get better, not only the post processing of my images but equipment, etc. and the best decision I have made to achieve this was to start the training sessions with Terry. He not only showed me fantastic Photoshop tricks but also introduced me to amazing software that I would otherwise have never known about it. He also gave me some awesome hardware suggestions.
This is not an easy hobby, it takes patience, time and a lot of dedication and it is a long road of acquiring knowledge and the right equipment, Terry was the shortcut to take me there faster. I highly recommend Terry’s tuition program, he is very competent, knowledgeable, honest and caring and I am happy to say that I have gained a lot, not only knowledge but a dear friend. THANK YOU, Terry!
I cannot begin to explain how happy I am to have found Terry and his incredible course. After stumbling around in the dark for a year,
I still did not have a decent photo to show for my effort. Not only was I having problems with my equipment, I was also having a hard time learning how to process what data I did have. Now, after six months of studying with Terry one on one, I feel like I have leaped ahead two years! Not only am I acquiring excellent data, but I now know how to calibrate, stack and process. Terry is currently showing me more advanced techniques as my knowledge and abilities increase. You absolutely cannot beat the cost for both Terry’s expertise and the amount of time that he spends with you. I would recommend this course to anyone who is serious about this type of photography.
I saw Terry's classes online and debated signing up for them. I had been doing Visual Astronomy for years and wanting to start taking images. I decided it would probably be better if I got an imaging mount, camera and some software to start familiarizing myself with the basics before I signed up. I realized after a year of getting poor results and struggling with the equipment I bought that I had chosen my setup poorly. Basically I had to start again from scratch. I went out on a limb and reached out to Terry on Facebook messenger. I told him I was interested in taking his classes but my equipment was terrible and I was struggling to learn the basics. After speaking to him I realized I could have saved myself a ton of money if I would have just signed up for his classes to start with! He has years of experience and knows so many people in the Astronomy community. He knew exactly which pieces of equipment worked and which ones didn't. While I was assembling my setup and waiting on new gear to arrive he was helping me use the gear I had better. He was also sending me data he had taken so he could begin teaching me how to process my own data when I obtained it. This was a huge help! By the time I got my setup all put together I was already developing an understanding for how capture and create my own images. It was very obvious that having him there to help me was the single best investment I could have ever made in learning this hobby. After only one year of taking his classes I have been featured by High Point Scientific. I have an image of Super Nova V405 Cass that was featured by Sky and Telescope Magazine in thier online Publication and I have sold a number of prints to people who saw my images online and messaged me requesting one. I am now getting better results then I thought I ever would. I know it would have taken me many years of trial and error and cost me thousands of dollars trying out different pieces of equipment to learn what Terry has taught me by myself. I highly recommend anyone who wants to learn Astrophotography sign up for these classes as soon as possible!