Photographing Wyoming’s Blue Moon, last night, August 20, 2013.
By Photographer Amanda Smith, Editor of The Glenrock Bird newspaper, Owner of Amanda Smith Photography (formerly Shooting Stars Photography.)
I have to say that photographing this “Blue Moon” was a little more difficult than I thought it would be, last night.
This was not your ordinary bulb setting or long exposure situation. Those ways simply won’t work with the moon.
I started out by setting my Nikon D700 on my tripod, and attached an f2.8 200 zoom. I then set my camera up on a tripod at around 10pm when the blue moon was extremely bright, realizing quickly that it was too bright to photograph on a bulb setting, a well known way to shoot night skies.
I initially set my camera at f8 with the lowest ISO setting my Nikon camera would allow and set the timing of my light at 1/80 of a second. This actually allowed too much light in because of the brightness of the blue moon, although the exposure was for correct exposure for the clouds, this exceptionally bright moon was completely blown out. In other words, the clouds and sky looked amazing, but the moon was completely blown out, there was no sharpness to the moon, at all.
I changed my settings to f22 for a sharper image, hoping to capture the unique markings of the moon, and set my timing of light to 1/160 of a second, and the moon looked great and the clouds, though a bit darker, were certainly still illuminated well enough (by the blue moon) for an excellent and very clear shot.
Amanda Smith Photography Wyoming. Blue Moon on August 20, 2013
Photographing the moon can be difficult, and sometimes people forget that exposure is perfection. If you want to see the “man in the moon” you’ve got to get your exposure dead on, and never settle for a moon so bright, that you can’t see the green cheese.
Have an awesome and very blessed day, folks! We’ll see you tomorrow!
Professional Photographer and Western Photographic Artist, Wyoming
Shooting for Christ, Focusing on God (©)
While we are talking about night shots, check out this little morsel I created lat week using a bulb setting. More on this shot below, tomorrow!