Photographs: Total Lunar Eclipse 15 June 2011

June 17, 2011 · 11 comments

in Culture,Equipment,Scapes,Tutorials

On Wednesday night, 15 June 2011, people in Africa and Central Asia were treated to a spectacular viewing of a total Lunar eclipse. In South Africa the Earth’s shadow started moving across the moon at 20h22, and the moon was completely eclipsed from 21h22 until just after 23h00.

This was the perfect opportunity for the maiden voyage of my new 70 – 200mm f/2.8 L IS II USM Canon lens!

In order to capture the detail on the surface of the moon, I shot on Manual 1/100th sec f/8 at 100 ISO. Once the moon was eclipsed and in shadow, I increased the shutter speed to 2 seconds.

Since Johannesburg is freezing cold, I only photographed until total eclipse, and then thawed off in front of the heater!

What exactly is a Lunar eclipse?

For a lunar eclipse to occur the moon, earth and sun all have to be completely aligned (or very closely so), with the earth in the middle.

The earth blocks the sun’s rays from reaching the moon as the sun passes behind our planet, resulting in a red glowing moon. Interestingly enough, the moon will always be full during a lunar eclipse.

{ 11 comments… read them below or add one }

Rozette June 17, 2011 at 12:52 pm


rikki hibbert June 17, 2011 at 12:53 pm

Thanks Rozette! :-)

Erika van Zyl June 17, 2011 at 12:54 pm

How beautiful! Well done – it was freezing cold that night! I take it you’re happy with the zoot new lens!

rikki hibbert June 17, 2011 at 12:55 pm

Absolutely! Could not have taken these photos without that lens!

Jani June 17, 2011 at 1:43 pm

Wow, that’s amazing!

Peter Tiedt June 17, 2011 at 2:22 pm

Excellent work. I like!

rikki hibbert June 17, 2011 at 2:25 pm

Thanks Peter! Which spectacular location did you watch the eclipse from??

Julian June 17, 2011 at 3:06 pm

Wow, brilliant!!

Harold Carlsson June 18, 2011 at 9:51 am

Brilliant!! Both the technical description and the result. Other photographers take note.

Carl June 19, 2011 at 1:14 pm

Yeah the horizon was too cloudy and the moonrise was too late to get a good view here in Holland. So thanks for your photos… Nicely done!

rikki hibbert June 20, 2011 at 9:00 am

Thank you Harold! It makes my day to know that 8 years after graduating, I’m still impressing my lecturer!

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