Last month we had 2 full moons during the month. This is a fairly common phenomenon, knowing that the moon has a cycle of 27.5 days and months are in general 30.5 days. A double full moon will so happen every 2.5 years in general. They can happen in any month, except February.

Here is a picture of the second full moon of December 2009. Also the last one, it occurred at 7:23PM here in Winnipeg.

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Now this does not look much like a picture, but taking shots of the full moon is not as simple as it looks.

If we let our cameras do the work, after all we bought them to be intelligent, then we end up with pictures that overexpose the moon. Leaving only a white dot or circle to contemplate.

Even if we try to use spot metering (good choice) then it’s close, but no cigar… The spot in our cameras is about 5 times the size of the full moon and so will still meter too much darkness.

Now let’s try something else. Set the camera to Manual and use a diaphragm of f/11. Set your ISO to 100, shutter speed to 1/100sec and focus. Sometimes the auto-focus will work, better to believe your own eyes here. Now, you will say: “I don’t have 100 ISO on my camera, it starts at 200.” Ok, then use ISO 200 and a shutter speed of 1/200. Same result.

Now press the shutter. Voila! You have a clear picture of the full moon. Now if you want to do the same with half moon or New moon, you will have to adjust your settings a bit but the principle remains the same.

The principle is called the Moony 11, and is a little brother of the old Sunny 16 rule.

Sh** ! Yesterday I went on a shoot and forgot to check the bracketing on my camera. Taking standard pictures (one at a time) I got only one third correctly exposed. And I only noticed it when uploading them to my computer. Bracketing is wonderful, except when it starts to mess up your exposure, like one correct (as metered) then one underexposed then one over exposed. At first I though my lens’s diaphragm got stuck in the cold. After all it was around –20C… Then checking the camera settings at home I found that the bracketing was still set to “on”.

Oh well, I suppose I will never forget this setting again (wishful thinking) Happily Lightroom can correct a lot of things, and I was shooting in RAW. Damage limited but the extra work was a little too much.

Sursohog
14 hours 48 minutes

---Great Blog again Henk - well done..

Henk
1 month 12 days

Thanks :) !

sursohog
1 month 12 days

---Very nice Blog Henk - some nice shots there...-:)

Henk
1 month 17 days

Presets can speed up your workflow a lot, provided you have plenty of the same type of pictures. People doing weddings will a ...

Henk
1 month 17 days

Hi, I hadn't noticed that the typing colour was that dark... changed it to pure white, that should do it ... Henk

'Dan..
1 month 17 days

I certainly agree the use of presets will discourage people learning their own methods but they can offer a shortcut to fulfi ...

Henk
2 months 9 days

Well, I was told so by a "pro" that later recanted... :-) I removed the name, so at least it is now correct.

josie brendle
2 months 10 days

nice blog but sorry the horses are not Clydesdales. Those are a little bigger. :)

Henk
2 months 11 days

Test comment here

Henk Von Pickartz
2 months 11 days

This is a comment. I will see if this works or if this will be taken over by spammers. If so, then I will take it down again.