Project Moonshot

It’s not just lying, under-educated, elite spaffers & chancers who can launch excitingly named projects in a misguided effort to sound effective.

Since I hadn’t taken any night time tripod shots for close to a decade it was time to dig out the tripod! Then search for the quick shoe in the loft, the garage & the internet. Then email Vanguard to ask what dimensions or part number shoe my ancient tripod requires & back to the internet. Wait 3 days & fit quick shoe.

  • Camera – check
  • Tripod – check
  • Coat – check
  • Darkness – check
  • Tripod Quick Shoe – check (eventually).
  • Darkness again – check.

My first attempt was at just after 6am in September I think. Fortunately I hadn’t crawled out of bed specially for it because the result was laughable. I hadn’t found how to switch to spot metering yet & was struggling with my vision so I was trying to rely on autofocus. The results were horrible. The one useful thing that came out of it was I got a really good picture of how dirty my lens was. The results were so bad I didn’t bother saving them.

My second attempt was an early evening on 1st December. Having discovered the button for switching the meter evaluation mode I was fully primed. The high contrast of the full moon against the black of night defied the capabilities of my crappy old eyes though. So I was struggling to focus. The light meter was suggesting very long exposures it just couldn’t seem to meter just for the moon even in spot mode.

The exposure meter suggested this. The completely over-exposed moon is not what I had in mind.
Manually setting exposure. Still not what I was hoping for,

Switching to manual yielded this at f20 1/4s ISO 100

Again not satisfactory at all.

The moon decided to bugger off behind some clouds & I was chilly & needed to make dinner.

I decided to come back to moonshots until I had performed a little research, but my initial thoughts were to try longer exposures with a neutral density filter.

A few days later after getting some great kite surfer pics I was trudging home. There was a partial moon high in the sky above some dramatic white clouds.

Nice daytime moon
Zooming in on the daytime moon
After some processing of the RAW file.

I am very pleased with the end result.

All images copyright © J.Sears 2020. All rights reserved.