As most of you already know……I have a thing for moon/eagle shots. Don’t ask me why,I just do.
There are 12 times each year I can “try” to take them and inside each of those times there are three days that are the best. The three days leading up to the full moon. You can’t shoot on the day of the full moon. The sunsets as the moon rises snuffing out all that golden light! Plus the moon rising times vary. Tonights full moon rises at 9:41 pm while the sunsets a little under half a hour earlier at 9:14 pm. Making any shot a silhouette. Now don’t get me wrong I’ve seen some pretty nice shots of eagles silhouetted but I prefer the gold. I have a saying “I always hunt for the Gold”. Like the Olympics I always try for the Gold,silhouettes for me win the Silver.
You can count on cloudy weather screwing up at least 6 of them. Like tonight!
This leaves only 6 times you can go and roll the dice.
Each photographer has their own preferences of course. I prefer to capture eagles in golden light with the moon in it’s “time window”. The moon rises In the east and is always faint (leading up to the full moon). As the sunsets the moon will get brighter and brighter. Until it’s nighttime and the moon is at it’s brightest point. I’ve found the moon is too faint when It rises in the east and too bright after the sun goes down. I figure there’s about a 20-30 minute “time window” in there where the moons brightness/contrast is perfect! The Goldi-Loks period!
Of course If you do find the moon during this perfect time window there is a 50 – 50 chance you might not find a eagle? The trick is finding both at the same time.
The eagle has to be perched “perfectly”. I’ve found a eagle needs to be perched at the very top of a tree spire or in another place where there is nothing behind them.
This months moon is a Buck moon. Because of weather (clouds) I couldn’t shoot this Buck moon. So I found some archival pictures.
When the moon rises in the east it’s always pale or faint. It will continue to rise and to get brighter and brighter. It will be it’s brightest when night has fallen. To take a good picture of the moon the brightness and contrast must be in the ball park. It’s too faint when it just rises and too bright when it’s dark out. So I’ve found there is about(?) a 30 minute time window when the moon is just perfect for shooting! The Goldi Loks time,not too little and not too much.
I took this shot (of a eagle I do not know) because the eagle was perched just right but my timing was off. I was too early. I tried to shoot two other eagle friends but couldn’t because of the angle. Trees got in the way with both of them! Rats! Good thing I got this safety shot!
The 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing is coming up on Saturday July 20. I remember watching the black and white TV images and holding my breath! Very few moments in human history have had so many people doing the same thing at the same time!
The Eagle landed in the sea of Tranquility on July 20th,1969. The Apollo 11 crew were Neil Armstrong,Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins. Armstrong and Aldrin went down to the surface while Collins stayed in the Columbia orbiting the moon.
My eagle friends and I salute all of the good souls who worked so hard to make this remarkable achievement!
Apologizes for posting this late folks. I went out camping on the night of the eclipse and only got back today. It was a very surreal experience standing out in the wilds with the valley walls bathed in a ghostly shade. Knowing my furry friends were all sleeping helped prop my courage. Tide was dropping.What a lot of people do not realize with a dropping tide is that all those huge slimy trees lifted up by the tide, do get hooked when the tide drops. Causing them to drop…..”suddenly”. So hearing these loud sudden noises was a bit unnerving.
I decided not to stay for three more hours to capture the moon leaving Earths shadow.
Its called a “Blood Red Wolf Moon” because the moon passed through near the edge of Earths shadow and not the centre. This gives a reddish hue colouring.
A Wolf moon is the name given to the full moon of January. Each month has its own unique name.