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Plan C: San Jose City Hall Eclipse Sequence | by Steven Christenson
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Plan C: San Jose City Hall Eclipse Sequence

NOTE: In October we will have another chance at a total lunar eclipse! You can read how I planned this shot HERE on our blog.




Moon Eclipse sequence plus CamRanger (equipment) failure


What you're looking at is a 9-shot panorama of the San Jose City Hall Rotunda overlayed with the moon as it transitioned from full to totally eclipsed, like totally!


What you don't see are some choice words for my CamRanger which failed THREE times during the course of the evening. Once was my fault, I introduced a not fully-charged battery. The other two were entirely because of the device. I'll go back to my regular intervalometer for this stuff next time.


One important thing to keep in mind: the pre-totality exposures were much different from the almost totality to totality exposures. Pre-totality was ISO 800, f/9, 1/200 of a second. As the last bit of moon was becoming eclipsed the exposures were ramped to ISO 800, f/7.1, 0.8 seconds. That's a HUGE difference.


I purposely didn't "clean up" this image completely. You'll notice, for example, that there is some weird stuff at the left edge - that's left over cloud glow. Look carefully and you'll also notice that I blended sets of exposures together before overlaying them on the foreground.


One more important comment: This shot - as accurately as I can - reflects the location of the moon at each shot. In other words, if you see a photo with a bright full moon and a completely eclipsed moon in the same frame that is NOT a wide-field shot, you can know right away that it's more than just an artifact of Photoshop. Such shots are interesting, and I'm not railing against them, just pointing out that you cannot use the distance from uneclipsed to eclipsed in those photos to plan a shot - you can safely use this one, however as a guide.




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Taken on April 15, 2014