Untitled (Super Blood Moon, Rancho Santa Margarita, September 27, 2015) copyright 2015 Douglas Stockdale
Yesterday was a fun day, spent most of it at the Orange County Museum of Art (OCMA) as the event photographer for one of their Family Fun Day’s in conjunction with their current exhibition “My Generation: Young Chinese Artists”.
Then to return home after dinner to witness the full lunar eclipse which is being called the Super Blood Moon, as this eclipse is concurring when the moon is about the closest proximity to earth. I am not usually a night time photo-astronomer, but since this event will not to occur for another 18 years and I was curious about the capabilities of my recently acquired Canon 5D mark III for night photographs, I thought why not?
My decision was aided by the fact that I could watch this event unfold and photograph the eclipse in my back yard with an unobstructed view made this occasion all that more easier. Thus I set the camera up on the tripod, pulled up a chair and brewed a cup of tea. The eclipse lasted for more than one hour, so I had a chance to try a variety of lens and compositions. For me this photograph above seems to work best; I like the framing of the eclipse with the tree branches, which closely approximates my view point and experience. Although I could get a full image of the eclipse with my 200 mm lens, by pulling back (probably about 70 mm) I personalized the image. So the only tweaking of the image was to try to obtain some tonal separation between the black tree limbs and the slightly lighter night sky. My surprise: when slightly lightening the night sky in Photoshop, a smattering of stars became more evident in the image, many of which I do not recall seeing. nice.