Meet The photographer
TIM "TJ" Connolly
On March 17, 2013, I entered the realm of astrophotography. I heard about a comet setting in the western sky at sunset. I took my Canon 450D, a tripod, an intervalometer, and my wife to a vacant corn field with a clear view to the west with a scenic view of Lyon Mountain. I started capturing 30 second exposed random images of the western sky. I captured an image with Lyon Mountain in the center. When I looked at the viewer, my heart dropped. There I saw the white ball of rock, ice and dust with a distinct tail. I yelled for my wife to come look, who was sitting in the car reading, and staying warm. The temperatures were a brisk cold temperature. She came over to the camera in disbelief as she saw I had captured Comet C/2011 L4 Panstarrs. I continued to capture images, and I even posed for a selfie in front of the comet with the mountain in the background. This opened the door and hooked me on taking pictures of the night sky. Since this event, I have taught myself the skill of astrophotography and captured every type of object in the sky to include, asteroids, comets, our moon, the sun, planets, the International Space Station, the Northern Lights, novas, nebulas, galaxies, stars, and star clusters. I am fortunate to be able to share this with my son. I quickly progressed taking space pictures and joined my local observatory, The Adirondack Sky Center and Observatory, formerly known as the Adirondack Public Observatory. I am currently an advisory board member for the observatory and instruct their four day Astrophotography Conference. I have presented classes, lectures and workshops to many groups. I have presented to local high schools, The State University of New York at Plattsburgh, and at the Adirondack Sky Center. I have also been featured on The Astro Imaging Channel. I have also conducted public outreach events to include the 2017 Great American Solar Eclipse, the North East Astronomy Forum's Solar Star Party, the Adirondack Sky Center's Sky Fest, and the Friday Night's Public Star Gazing Events at the Adirondack Sky Center.From my experience as an astrophotographer and interactions at large public events, I became close with Sam, Ji, Vanessa, Memory, and Sean of ZWO Astronomy Cameras. Sean has since left ZWO, but was extremely helpful and a wealth of knowledge. I became a tester for ZWO and provided feedback to their innovating developments. I am an administrator on the ZWO Astronomy Cameras Facebook page and the ZWO ASIair Facebook page where I provide assistance and help other ZWO users.