Tips for Shooting the Moon

Did you try and take a picture of the super moon? Did it turn out more like the sun, like this, than a detailed shot of the moon?

Untitled photo

The first thing I did when I decided to go photograph the moon was to check an app, SkyView. This app uses augmented reality to show/name the different constellations and other celestial bodies, like the moon. It also shows you where they are in comparison to you. This showed me where the moon was before I ever left my desk.

The most important thing to keep in mind is that the moon is reflecting sunlight and is brighter than you think. The photo above is an 8 second exposure at f4. The moon had just come out from behind the clouds and lit up the area quite nicely. While I like how the shot came out, it’s not what my goal was. I wanted a photo showing the details of the moon.

Camera Settings

While shooting in manual mode, I changed the aperture to f5 and the shutter speed to 1/125 of a second. I was also using the timer on the camera to avoid any camera shake. (Which reminds me, I need to see about a remote trigger for the new camera.) I did have to crop in pretty heavy and won’t be able to get a print of this photo, but with a 200mm lens, I was able to get a decent, detailed shot of the moon.  

Super Moon July 2014


- Figure out where the moon is and when it will rise

- Use a tripod and either the timer or a remote trigger to avoid camera shake and blurry pictures

- Set the camera f5 and 1/125 sec.

If you have any questions, let me know. I’d also love to see your photos of the moon. Put a link in the comments so I can check them out.

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