Saturday, July 28, 2007


Last night when I drove into my back yard, the full moon was positioned just above the trees so I took a few photos. I am sending three images this morning to teach a lesson in photographing the moon. I didn't use a tripod for these photos.

The first photo was shot with the camera set to Auto and an ISO of 400. The camera chose f5.6 (the limit of my 300 mm lens) and 1/25th sec. You will notice that the moon is overexposed and blurry in this image. Because the camera was set to Auto, it read the scene as very dark and let in more light, causing the moon to be too bright.

To capture the second image, I set the ISO to 1600 and manually chose 1/125 sec. The camera was set to f5.6 and I wasn't sure how to change it (time to read my manual again). I took a few photos while leaning on the roof of a car to support my 300 mm lens. The third image was cropped from the second to give a closer view.

Years ago, I read an article that gave instructions about how to get a good exposure of the moon. The moon is as bright as daylight so you have to shoot the scene as though it were bright. As well, since the Earth is rotating very quickly, it is difficult to get the moon in focus. I don't consider either of these images to be good, but wanted to show that capturing a photo of the moon is a challenge.

It is supposed to be a nice evening so I may try it again with a tripod and a variety of exposures.

I photographed the fireweed yesterday and was happy that there were about a dozen bees instead of the two or three that I have been observing over the past few days.

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