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Are you talking about spots you see on the pictures? Are these spots you see in the same place on all the pictures? If you really want to see if your sensor is dirty pick a clear day with a great blue sky focus to infinity and then shift the lens to manual focus and the program to "P" take a pitch of the blue sky. Then down load this picture to the computer and open it up to 100% and look it over if there are spots then the sensor should be cleaned. Even if you take the lens off and look into the camera body you still can't see the sensor all you are looking at is the mirror inside the prism box. To clean the sensor you need to put the camera into "clean" mode which locks the mirror up. It may be possible you just have a dirty lens or UV filter.
The spots are dust on your sensor. You can clean these yourself but you must learn the techniques first. Google the words...cleaning a DSLR sensor. You will be taken to sites which will explain in detail how to do it and what supplies you will need. It may seem daunting at first, but it is really easy once you know how.
The main reason for such things is a dusty sensor. Mostly the sensor dust comes out on sky areas just like you said and especially when useing a small or a medium aparture usually starting from f5,6.
I would recommend you to do a test photo. All you have to do is make a picture of a white thing e.g. paper with an aparture f8 or more. Then you can see all the dust spots on the sensor. If there are not many of them then you can just use photoshop to remove them from every picture, b ut I would recommend you do take your camera to the nearest service and let them clean the sensor or you can buy a sensor cleaning kit e.g. Visible Dust and clean it yourself.
The ccd sensor is dirty. Have it cleaned at a camera shop. You can do yourself with sensor swabs and eclipse fluid but it a is very delicate operation. Local shop here cleaning is $45 and no spots, well worth it.
It's 99% dust, especially if it appears mostly in smaller apertures (<f/8). To test it, select a small aperture (e.g. f/16) and take a photo of a blue sky. The spots will show consistently on the same location.
They're hard to clean, so chances are you just missed them. Try again, or, better still, send it for cleaning to a professional.
The two pictures were shot at dramatically different exposures - the "dark" one at 1/1600 shutter speed, f7.3, the "light" one at 1/320 shutter speed, f4.0. This accounts for the great difference, as the exposure conditions for the "light" one allowed much more light into the image during the exposure period. You didn't tell the whole story of how you set this up, I think you were shooting in a "spot" metering mode, where the particular exposure conditions the camera uses would vary considerably whether you were aiming at a dark area (making the picture light) or a light area (making the picture dark).
I would make two recommendations: Switch your metering mode to "center weighted" (the mode labeled "[(•)]"), and also change your ISO setting to AUTO, as there would be no reason for shooting these photos at ISO 200 that I can think of.