I always have to try. I have not gotten the shot I want yet…but I am getting closer. You stand at the edge of the shallow pond where the Sandhill Cranes roost for the night, as the sun sets to the west over the mountains, and keep your ear open for the calls of Cranes coming in behind you on a course that might take them near the moon. In the meantime you are busy photographing Cranes against the setting sun, and Cranes coming in to land among their fellows, and all the time, too rapidly, you are loosing the light…but you have to keep half your mind on the moon. Because, one of these days a small group of Cranes is going to fly in front of the moon and you are going to catch it! This is as close as I got this year. Each year I get a little closer, and of course, I miss the one shot where the Crane actually crosses the moon. Sony RX10iv in my special Birds in Flight and Action modification of Program mode. Processed in Polarr. And here is the second best shot.
No, this is not a PhotoShop image. Patience, and some cooperative Snow Geese at Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge south of Socorro New Mexico, yesterday morning, made this shot possible. I saw it coming, and zoomed back to increase my chances of catching the action. I have a whole sequence of similar shots as the Geese passed in front of the moon, but this one, with the flock framing the moon had the most pleasing composition. I feel privileged to have been able to record it! 🙂
Sony RX10iii at 487mm equivalent field of view. Program Mode (my specialized saved settings for Birds in Flight, with wide area continuous focus). Processed in PhotoShop Express on my Android tablet.
My Facebook feed is full of moons this morning…Harvest Moons. I took this shot 2 nights ago, before I had been reminded of the significance of this particular full moon, so one day shy of full…just because it was so beautiful emerging from a layer of clouds over Columbus. Grange Insurance Audubon Center, Columbus Ohio.
Sony RX10iii at 600mm equivalent field of view. Hand-held Twilight Mode (multiple exposures processed down to one in-camera). Post-processed in Lightroom.
I am not a big fan of Photoshoped images…images that are created in Photoshop…and could not exist without digital manipulation. I tried for an actual shot of Sandhill Cranes against the almost full moon at Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge during the Festival of the cranes, with some success, but also took a few daylight shots of the moon thinking I might later work up a composite image in Photoshop…just for fun! This is one. In some ways it is a testament to the power of the Nikon P900 camera. Both shots, moon and cranes, were taken hand-held with the P900. The moon is at about 2000mm equivalent field of view, and the cranes are at about 1200mm. To create the image, I edited out one piece of crane in the top left corner using iPixio. Then, in Photoshop, I used the magic wand tool to select and delete the blue sky background around the cranes. It required some fine adjustments of the selection, pixel by pixel, to eliminated almost everything that was not crane. Finally I opened the moon shot and pasted the cranes over the moon. It took about an hour.
As art, I think it works. As a photograph, maybe not so much. 🙂
And, as a Thanksgiving shot? Well I am, of course, thankful for my cameras, for my software and computer, and most of all, for time to play. But that thankfulness does not begin to touch the real thankfulness for my life, my life in Christ…for my family, for my home, for the blessing of being…for the privilege of sharing…for the love I am surrounded by. When we sit down to celebrate today as a family, it is such an amazing abundance that we celebrate. And no matter what else goes on in this world, we have a right, we have a duty, to be happy! Happy Thanksgiving.
Last night there was a huge fellowship of moon watchers…people all over the world stood outside (or went to the beach for the dark sky as we did) to watch a fairly unique supermoon eclipse of the moon…a Blood Moon. Today social media is flooded with photos taken from around the globe. The moon probably had better viewing ratings than the Superbowl last night!
This is my shot. Nikon P900 at about 1800mm equivalent field of view. 1/6th second at ISO 1600 @ f6.3. Processed in Lightroom.