The July full moon will pass through the centre of the Earth’s shadow in the evening hours next Friday, July 27.
After the eclipsed moon rises over the horizon after 8.30pm BTS, the bright orb will glow a deep red to orange hue – the Blood Moon.
Canon ambassador and veteran landscape photographer David Noton said the Blood Moon is a great chance to dip your toes into photography.
He said: “Watching these kinds of events unfold, whether it is a moonrise or watching the light paint the landscape, is a real fundamental joy and that is what photography is all about.”
You can read the full excessive interview with Mr Noton here.
1. “Download the right apps to be in-the-know”
Tracking the position of the blood moon and the sun across the sky takes a little bit of work and using the right mobile app or desktop equivalent could be a great time saver.
Mr Noton personally uses The Photographer’s Ephemeris to determine the times of moonrise and moonset on any given day.
He then uses the Photopills apps to narrow down the moon’s exact location in the sky.
The aim is to capture the moon within the first 15 minutes of it peaking above the horizon, juxtaposing it against an object of interest like a tree on a hill.
2. “Invest in a lens with optimal zoom”
Mr Noton thinks one of the key challenges on the night of July 27 will be trying to capture the moon in its full glory – rugged surface, craters and all.
Photos like this are typically reserved for astronomers with powerful telescopes but a trusty telephoto lens can do the trick.
Mr Noton advises using a full frame DSLR with a 600mm focal length to capture the moon up-close.
To capture the moon himself, the photographer will use a full frame Canon EOS 5D Mark IV paired with a EF 200-400mm f/4L lens.
3. “Use a tripod to capture the intimate details”
Framing your shot of the moon can be a tricky task because the moon will appear to move across the sky relatively quickly.
From start to finish Mr Noton expects you might have just about 15 minutes to get the perfect snapshot.
If you choose to use a longer lens for the shoot be prepared to see the moon zoom past your viewfinder and even the most minimal camera shake can blur your photo.
A sturdy tripod can mitigate this problem when effectively paired with a higher shutter speed.
4. “Integrate the moon into your landscape”
While up-close photographs of the Blood Moon can be breathtaking in their own right, Mr Noton thinks setting the orb against the landscape produces a much more interesting composition.
During the January 31, 2018, Super Blue Blood Moon the photographer snapped the giant moon rising over Stonehenge.
But the good news is you do not have to snap the moon against such a historically significant landmark.
Mr Noton said it can be something as simple as a lone tree on a hill.
5. “Master the shutter speed for your subject”
Snapping the perfect photo of the moon will require knowing your shutter speeds like the back of your hand.
On a clear night, depending on your focal length, you might want to think about exposing your photo at 1/250s at f8 and ISO 100.
Be aware the slower you go with your shutter speed the more your risk turning the moon into a blurry streak of light across the sky.
Mr Noton reckons, deepening on his camera settings and conditions, he will not go lower than 1/60s with his shutter speed.