HOW TO FIND IT:
Draw a line from Alpha through Beta Arietis, leading you to Eta Piscium. Then locate Rho Piscium and star 105. These three will form a triangle. M74 will be in the middle of the smallest leg of that triangle, between Eta and 105. In a low power telescope, such as a 4 1/4 inch reflector, you will be able to see the galaxy and Eta in the same field of view.
You will not see this one with your viewfinder or your binoculars.
WHAT TO LOOK FOR:
This is one of the most difficult and least observed of the Messier objects. Webb didn't mention it in his survey. Norton simply said it was "faint and elusive."
Look for a faint star. Carefully examine each star in the general area. M74 will appear as a star-like object surrounded by a haze of nebula. What you are looking at is a spiral galaxy's bright nucleus surrounded by its spiral arms.