First– you need to go against your urge to open the shutter. Capturing the moon is actually like shooting directly at a giant flashlight. You can keep your ISO low & your shutter speed fast. I’m usually using my long lens- so my aperture is usually at a minimum of f/5.6 when zoomed at 300mm.
Second- don’t expect those fabulous moon over the horizon shots to just happen. If you want a detailed moon- you have to go with the settings I mentioned above. When you do this- everything else is black. If you want to capture everything below the moon- you have to open your shutter & your result will be a big glowing dot in the sky. (like this shot below) You have to use a double exposure to get the look you are after. Unless you are shooting at dusk & still have some light in the sky. This being said- the example below shows that I didn’t have quite as much light as I thought- I ended up with the dreaded glowing dot. (I have yet to play with double exposure- maybe someday I will give it a whirl.)
5/5/2012 Super Moon 300mm ISO 400 1/200 f/5.6
I should have lowered the ISO to 200 to get this sharper.
5/5/2012 Super Moon 300mm ISO 200 1/250 f/5.6
January 2012 300mm ISO 200 1/160 f/5.6
So- it’s obvious that I have a lot to learn still. I’m far from an expert.
But I hope that you are able to see what I have done & it helps you capture what you are after.
Pieni Lintu says
I liked that last one most!
MG Atwood says
Thanks for this. I went out on the 5th, not happy with what I shot. Have been so beat the next two nights I totally spaced it. MUST try tonight!
I’m soooo jealous!!! We had full clouds on super moon nights! Love your photos!!! Beautiful!
Susan @ Sunflower Status says
Wow! The main tip that got me was “zoomed at 300mm”… I so need to get a better lens and try this. I LOVE that last shot, truly amazing!
wow your moon shots are incredible, and I love seeing all your settings! I just don’t have a long enough lens to shoot the moon, and the one time I tried moon shots was with my camera hooked up to a friend’s telescope! But I couldn’t get the shots in perfect focus. I did read that sometimes atmosphere can make your photos look out of focus, so it might not be your lens. There may have just been a haze in the sky that you couldn’t see that was slightly dispersing the light of the moon. But all your shots are pretty incredible–I especially love the last two!
Lil Mama Stuart says
interesting – I’m really surprised you can see the details in the craters, nice!
Pam Bowers says
Your moons are always so beautiful. I wanted to try a shot with the foreground showing this time. I’m surrounded by hills so while the moonrise was at 7:30 I didn’t actually see it till closer to 8. It was way too dark.
Linda R says
WOW! I just loved reading how you got these shots. I didn’t even get to see the super moon 🙁
Thanks so much for all the info. I am definitely going to try this.
Karen Mortensen says
Wow. Beautiful pictures.
Very helpful tips Gina! The detail in your last shot is amazing. I really love the landscape shots though, even though there is less moon detail. They’re gorgeous!
I was hoping to get some decent shots last weekend but we had cloudy skies.
Kim C. says
I think these are pretty great! I would have loved to have shot mine closer to the horizon, but couldn’t. I love how large your moon looks. And the eclipse is very out of this world with the colors. Very cosmic!
That last shot is *fantastic*!!
And I love the blue sky one, too.
I didn’t see the super moon when it was yellow – it was cloudy right until it got pretty high in the sky. So, I like the first one, too. 🙂
I always love seeing your moon photos! Thank you for sharing your experiences! I typically start shooting at ISO 100, f/11, 1/125s and adjust the shutter speed from there. I almost always have to lower the SS. The one I posted recently of the super moon I shot at ISO 100, f/25, 1/20s. I was just experimenting and this one turned out the best. 🙂