Shooting the eclipse

4 03 2007

Eclipse Phase 3What a show was yesterday night’s total Moon eclipse! The air was as clear as a crisp winter night can be, so I headed out of town with a friend, we mounted our tripods in the countryside and spent a couple hours shooting at the moon with our cameras.

Thanks to my long zoom, I could fill a decent portion of the frame with the moon and got some nice shots. Unfortunately, as the umbra of the Earth started covering more and more of the Moon, which was getting more and more dark and reddish in color, two factors contributed to make the pictures of the totality phase less then appealing.

The first problem is that my camera is very bad when it comes to focusing in low light conditions. Fortunately, I had manual focus on and set it when the moon was still bright enough, so I could have still saved most of them, but in the dark I didn’t realize that humidity was condensing on the lens as the night grew colder. I wasn’t aware of this until this morning, when I saw this particular picture.

Anyway, I put the best pictures in this set on Flickr, but I had really hoped for some nice “red moon” images. Maybe I’ll have better luck next time. The next lunar eclipse, on August 28, is going to be total as well. The only problem is that the best place to see it will be French Polynesia. Should I start booking a trip to Tahiti for my next summer vacations? 😉

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