Transitioning from an iPhone 5s to a Sony a6000 mirrorless camera was akin to stepping from the driver’s seat of a Model T Ford into an Audi R8. Sensory overload. The myriad number of camera settings, lens choices, photo composition, lighting – it all seemed quite daunting.
But here I was six months later, feeling pretty confident, awaiting the rise of the blood moon over the iconic Vikeholmen lighthouse in Skudeneshavn, Norway. The scene was set. The tripod was levelled and armed with my Sony Alpha a6000 Mirrorless Digital Camera along with the Sony telephoto SEL 55-210mm lens. Remote shutter release was at the ready and Samyang 12mm wide-angle lens on standby. I was shooting on manual. All I needed now, was for the sky to darken and the blood moon to awaken.
It’s all in the Planning
It wasn’t by chance that I was standing there in the twilight casting my eyes south. There was a degree of planning behind all this. Earlier in the day, I’d checked the Moon Calc website which gave me the vital azimuth and elevation values of the moon enabling me to plan the foreground composition of the photos.
If all went to plan, then the lighthouse would feature with the blood moon. And maybe, just maybe, we’d be lucky enough to capture a glimpse of Mars.
First Glimpse of the Blood Moon
The predicted time of moon-rise was 10:05 pm but it teased us and didn’t make its grand entrance until 11 pm.
That’s when its full splendour was revealed. As they say, ‘good things come to he who waits’.
Over the next two hours, we watched the moon transition through its lunar eclipse. Even Mars shrugged off any initial shyness to join us on this auspicious occasion. Look to the right of the house below and see a small red-ish speck of light – yep, that’s Mars.
As they say, practice makes perfect and I had great fun playing with the different camera settings. For a mere novice, I am happy with the end result. All things considered, I think photography is a bit like golf, there are many things that have to be just right to get the shot you want.
I might also add that whilst I was busy capturing the moment, Michelle was pondering deeper, more profound issues about the blood moon. Her article, about it being a time for ‘letting go of what is holding us back’, makes for interesting reading.
I would like to hear from you about your challenges and successes from behind the viewfinder.
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Being an Australian boy brought up in the country, I learnt at an early age to enjoy the freedom and beauty of nature. Leaving Australia at the age of 20, although I didn’t know it then, would be the beginning of a life of adventure. So join me here on our travels and see the world through my eyes.