Two years ago, Dylan O'Donnell bought a telescope on a whim with his $1, 000 tax refund.
Now his star photography is getting the kind of attention most amateur astronomers could only dream of.
At the time he did not realise his backyard in Byron Bay was perfectly placed to view and record deep space. What started as a hobby has become an obsession.
"We are 28 degrees south of the equator, " Mr O'Donnell said.
"We can see things like the moon and the sun with less atmosphere between us and the object.
"Couple that with the fact that Byron Bay has very low light pollution.
"It really opened up the whole sky for me."
Stargazing has been a fascination for Mr O'Donnell since he was a child.
"Like many children I was one of those kids that just loved space and my dad gave me a little toy telescope and I went out and found Jupiter myself, " Mr Donnell said.
"You never forget a thing like that."
Recently Mr O'Donnell installed a kit observatory in his backyard so he could better combine his two great passions: astronomy and photography.
"What I do is astro-photography, " Mr O'Donnell said.
"I get these high resolution images of deep space objects: the deep space nebulas and, galaxies.
"Some of my favourite images are dark nebulas ... where you see blackness that is blacker than the blackness of space.
"That really appeals to me."
Photos of space taken by Mr O'Donnell have sparked the interest of NASA and the international space station.
"The international space station astronauts themselves Scott Kelly and Chris Hadfield both noticed and then all these organisations within the space industry were retweeting and sharing the image, " Mr O'Donnell explained.
"They've published quite a few of images since then as well."
All the photographs that Mr O'Donnell produces are shared for free in the public domain.
"I have a mission to get the science out there ... I hope that people see the images and they are engaged, " Mr O'Donnell said.
"It's science and science is wonderful.
"Hopefully we can engage more young people into doing science, technology, engineering and mathematics."
Topics: astronomy-space, science-and-technology, photography, arts-and-entertainment, byron-bay-2481, nsw