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Lunar Eclipse, 2008

Lunar Eclipse, 20th February 2008

Camera: Canon Digital Rebel XT (EOS 350)
Lens: Canon EF 70–300mm f/4–5.6
Exposure: various
Aperture: various
Focal Length: 300mm
ISO Speed: various

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Composite image of the total lunar eclipse on the 20th of February, 2008 in Portland, Oregon. Photos were taken at five minute intervals from 6:13pm to 7:03pm US Pacific Time. Totality was achieved at 7.01pm. The yellowish tinge to the moon in the first few images is due to its proximity to the horizon at the time. As it rose higher, the yellow colour faded away, only to be replaced by the eerie blood-red of the eclipse.

Technical Details: The camera was tripod mounted with mirror lockup enabled (the bright moon can create a reflection on the mirror that can ruin the exposure as the mirror flips up) and a cable release to minimise camera shake. I shot RAW files to give me more post-processing flexibility. Exposures vary from 1/60th second at ƒ/11, ISO 100 for the first image to one second at ƒ/11, ISO 800 for the final image — the moon is a surprisingly bright object and doesn’t need long exposures if you want to retain surface detail in your shots. I performed some minor exposure and white balance adjustment in Adobe Lightroom before final composition in Photoshop.

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