October 24th, 2007

photography

Moon riddle


Full moon skyline
Originally uploaded by funcrunch
Photographers among you, please tell me: How do I get a shot of the full moon showing its beautiful detail, and still have other objects in the photo visible and in focus?

I was walking home from work today and saw the moon rising above the Transamerica Building, and thought if I could set up my tripod quickly enough I'd have a perfect shot of it rising directly above the point of the pyramid. Of course by the time I'd set everything up and figured out where the self-timer was (so I didn't jostle the camera) and tried all manner of manual settings, the alignment was off, and it was dark enough that the moon looked like the sun in most of my shots. In the few that any detail was visible, the rest of the skyline was completely black. I later saw that these were set at shutter speed 1/1600; I had thought the 1600 was the ISO setting, doh!

I have a decent camera but I don't have a long telephoto lens; this is the best zoom I could get from my balcony. But I didn't want a tight closeup of the moon anyway, I wanted the skyline, particularly the pyramid, in the shot.