Earth's natural satellite can do a
lot for a photographer. It can stand model, it can enhance a picture through
its presence, and it can even serve as light source: About one minute exposure
time at f/2 will give a well exposed photo of a landscape lit by the full
moon, on ISO 100 film.
This photo was made by coupling a
reflex camera body to an amateur telescope built by Roberto Castillo. The
focal length was around 2 meter, at an aperture of roughly f/16. Exposure
time was 1/15th of a second, on ISO 100 film. After all, the moon is nothing
else than a sunlit ball of relatively dark rock and dust! You can expose
it as that.
Well, actually it's the early morning
moon. The sun was helping by providing front light through a mist layer.
After all, a solar eclipse is nothing
else than the fully backlit moon! I travelled 4000 km to get a chance at
photographing a total solar eclipse. There was another photographer near
to my chosen site. He set up a camera with autowinder, and laughed at my
attempt to shoot the diamond ring, which lasts only for one or two seconds,
with my hand-cranked camera. He pressed his shutter 15 seconds before onset
of totality, and let his camera run like crazy. Two seconds before totality
his camera had spooled through all the film. And then the diamond ring
appeared! I shot just one photo of it. He shot 36 trashcan photos and pulled
his hairs out.
The second diamond ring, at the end of
totality, caught us both off guard. It came so suddenly!
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