People often express surprise that you can see planets without a telescope. Given the gathering of the planets Mercury, Venus, Mars and Saturn in the evening sky at present, I thought I would brave the winter cold and take a photo tonight to show how easy it is to see them.
The above photograph is an six second exposure using a DSLR camera mounted on a stationary tripod with the ISO rating set to 800 ASA. The short horizontal line is a distant passing plane. The planets are extremely easy to see.
Finally, next week the Moon will join this temporary grouping of planets. A finder chart can be found here for next Thursday when this begins to happen.