I’ll never get tired of watching lunar eclipses. Even though I understand the science of what’s occurring, there’s still something magical and mystical about the event.
This morning’s eclipse peaked exactly at 5:00 AM in the San Francisco Bay Area. This image shows the darkest point of the eclipse. There was still a sliver of light on the upper right edge of the moon that never disappeared completely. I think folks in western Alaska and Hawai’i were treated to “true” totality…but we got the next best thing!
No complaints from this photographer.
Now if you’ll excuse me, I could use a nap!
Even when you’re finished shooting the sunset–which by tropical standards was not that spectacular–and you’re moseying back to your vehicle with your camera gear and tripod in hand, it pays to look behind you. Because there, almost as if to make up for the lackluster sunset, is a lovely new moon bathed in earthshine hanging over the palm trees.
You may be tired, you may be hungry, and you may already be happy with what’s on your memory card from the day’s shoot, but it would be a crime to pass up such a lovely scene and not take at least one image.
While I usually shoot the moon with a long telephoto to make it larger in the frame, I took this shot with my zoom set around 100mm in order to get a large grouping of palm trees in the image. Since I was shooting through a palm grove, the challenges for me were twofold: to get some pleasing silhouettes of the palm trees as well as to find an opening between the palms that showed off the moon with some sky around it. I did a little dance at the edge of the palm grove with the camera on the tripod until I found a view that met both criteria.
With the gentle tradewinds rustling the palm fronds, the sky turning lovely shades of turquoise and cobalt, and the stars beginning to wink on one by one, it truly was an enchanted evening.
Here’s hoping that 2013 will be a year filled with health, happiness, adventures, and lots of photo ops for all of us!
Do you enjoy looking at the moon and stars at night, as I do?
Do you enjoy shooting them, as I do?
Do you wish that you could see the objects in the night sky more clearly, as I do?
Is your neighborhood or town beset by unnecessary light pollution from poor streetlight design, as mine is?
Is your property nightly flooded with blinding light due to inconsiderate neighbors’ outdoor lighting techniques (the “some is good, more is better” philosophy), as mine is?
Can you see the Milky Way from your home, or only when you’re camping?
Please check out http://www. darksky.org for a good explanation of why light pollution control and the use of downlighting make a community more livable and safer.
The site is sponsored by the IDA, the International Dark-Sky Association.
Without a dark sky, images like this eclipse shot are all but impossible.
So let there NOT be unnecessary and overly bright lighting at night…
Let the stars and moon shine in all their glory!
Welcome to RPRT Photo. I’m a photographer specializing in nature, wildlife and travel photography…and whatever else strikes my fancy. I shoot mostly outdoors, and mostly with available light.
What does RPRT stand for? Right Place, Right Time. Those are the two essential ingredients for an outstanding image, IMHO. Of course, this assumes that the photographer has the creative vision to compose an image, and the technical expertise to capture it. Then, it’s simply a matter of being in the Right Place at the Right Time. Easy, right?
I’ll be posting the following things, in no particular order:
- some of my images, and the stories behind them
- advice on how to capture better images
- travel notes, e.g., where to find the best lobster roll in Maine
- musings on the art of photography
- select referrals to other photographers’ websites, blogs, classes, tours, etc.
- random thoughts that don’t fit into any of the five categories above
That’s all for now. So go to the Right Place at the Right Time and create your own magic. Happy shooting!