Wolf Moon

On the way home from eating at Taint’s house Friday, I noticed the moon was brilliant and clear. It was a bright, surreal wolf moon out and it looked amazing.

When I got home I pulled out my camera and tripod and headed outside to my driveway. I had a thick jacket on, knitted hat, and scarf to keep me warm. I was ready to capture this glorious bright moon.

Turns out out I made a fatal photo error. I didn’t know my camera! I totally could not figure out how to set the exposure. I fidgeted with the flashlight trying to keep it on the camera menu screen. It was nearly 30 degrees Fahrenheit (-1 degrees Celsius) outside. I forgot to put on gloves.

The thing about me is that my body completely shuts down when I get cold. This happens at excessive speeds. After playing around with the camera for five minutes, my fingers were piercing cold. I felt like if I hit them on anything, they’d shatter. I couldn’t even get the camera to take a picture of my freaky tree without using the flashlight. Damn exposure setting!!! I ended up going “fuck it! I’m dying!” and ran inside.

It took me nearly 15 minutes to recover I was shaking so bad. I eventually found the manual to the camera but even after reading up on exposures, I could not will myself to go back out into the cold. Next time I won’t forget my gloves.

The sucky thing is I missed my opportunity to take a good picture of the full moon. I guess I’ll have to wait for the next one to try again.


rackedout said...

As far as the tree, it might not have been the exposure settings you had, but rather that there wasn't enough light for the auto focus.

I ran into this when I was taking some photos in caves. I took some using my flash, but wanted to try to just use the flashlight, some painting with light if you will. When I tried without my flash, it wouldn't focus. The flash sent the preliminary flash, which gave it enough light to focus. Without it, I couldn't focus. Well, I probably could have focused manually, but in the darkness, I'm not sure how well it would have turned out.

mama of 3 said...

Im barely learning about photography. But isn't this one of those instances where you set the shutter speed to stay open for several seconds and have your aperture wide open? Like where you take time lapsed photos of the stars as they cross over the night sky. I though those are things you have to do manually. hmm, now I must know, I MUST!

AzyxA said...

You could have used your point n shoot ;)

Alachia said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Alachia said...

OMG. you're right!

I actually did see someone get this shot right with a D90 (http://www.flickr.com/photos/dgwphotography/4320982743/). He has a focal length of 300mm though... only like a zillion times more zoom than what I had...but yeah.
I SHOULD have used my g10!!!

AzyxA said...

It helps to have an amazing zoom, but if you don't, since your camera has such a high megapixel, you can easily zoom to the max and crop it.

I have done that with a lot of my full moon shots taken with my A650. Maxed focal length: 44.4.
x6 optical zoom.

And though it helps, you don't "need" a tripod. Given the brightness of a typical full moon, you'll most likely end up increasing the shutter speed more than you might think.

For instance, this shot:

ISO: 80
Exposure: 1/160
Aperture: f/8.0

If I wasn't able to set up a tripod or if it was too cold to bother ( I have some other shots where this was the case ), I would have just bumped the ISO up a bit, lowered to f/4.5ish, so I could bump up my shutter speed even more to compensate for any hand movement.

Probably common sense to you at this point, but I figured I would share my experience with these shots :)