Rachel and I were in Chile during the last weeks of December 2011. We were often hiking for days inside a national park without internet, and therefore didn’t know about comet Lovejoy... but we took some pictures of the Southern Cross, Centaurus, Magellanic clouds, etc.
This photo shows the constellations of Crux (the Southern Cross) and Centaurus. The photo was taken at 51.006232 S, 73.180446 W, Torres del Payne National Park, Chile on Christmas eve of 2011, at about midnight. Note that the southern sky is still bright!
Sliding the mouse over the picture will show the prominent stars and constellations in the background.
The picture is not bright and therefore requires your monitor to be properly calibrated. While a proper calibration of the monitor is time consuming (and expensive), a quick (and dirty) way is to adjust your monitor so that you can see ALL the 17 different shades in the image below, in particular the darkest shades.