Scuttering Clouds – 4AM

Pentax 645z with 45-85mm
f/4.5 @ 20 seconds @ ISO 100

When the moon is full, or nearly so, there are great landscape photography opportunities, and one doesn't need to be in an exotic locale to take advantage of them. I'll add here though, that when I'm planning a workshop, expedition and other type of shooting trip, I will always try and have it coincide with that month's full moon, all other factors allowing.

On this particular night the winds were high and a rank of low clouds scuttered across the face of the moon, alternately revealing and concealing it. 

I realized that this presented an opportunity to not only create an interesting cloudscape using a longish exposure, but also if I could time the peek-a-boo moon properly I could prevent the moon from blurring-out due to the 20 second exposure that the foreground landscape required.

Raw File

It took a half dozen tries, but eventually I managed an exposure where the moon was cloaked by clouds for about 18 of the 20 seconds, which was just what was needed. As can be seen in the 100% crop below the actual exposure time for the moon was short enough to hold detail both in terms of motion blur and exposure, while the rest of the image only needed some shadow lifting to produce a coherent image.



This image and its analysis may be discussed on the LuLa Forum