I knew this one was going to be tough. The biggest moon of the year (the proverbial supermoon) was due to rise 30 minutes after sunset. That’s an eternity of lost light and would make for a very technically difficult shot but also made compositional options difficult. With the moon being so much brighter than anything around it, the foreground elements would end up lost short of some multi-exposure tricks. Then it dawned on me that Marblehead Light was still draped in led lights from the Independence Day holiday so I planned out my location at the edge of Fort Sewall.
I arrived and setup and waited…and waited. The moon arrived on time but it seemed even darker when it first appeared and, by the time its full face was visible, there was almost no light to be had. I was shooting with my longest lens at 285mm which also meant that the strong winds were wreaking havoc on the setup with every gust adding motion and blur to the image. I played with ISOs and tried to balance the noise in the final image with sharpness. Of the 150 images I took (a series of 5 was common hoping for a moment of calm between gusts of wind), this was my one favorite image.
It still had more noise than I liked and the noise reduction, while amazing, left some artifacts in the edges of the sky that I would have to point out for you to see but they are there to frustrate me.
All that being said, for all the technical difficulties, this shot exceeded my expectations for tonight’s Moon Light (get it?).