I have been having a lot of fun these past few months shooting some work with full moons, or as it has been – almost a full moon. In the past when I have wanted to shoot with the full moon more often than not I never knew when it was going to appear, or where on the horizon, and sky, it would be till it was too late.
Then I got my hands on The Photographer’s Ephemeris (http://photoephemeris.com) and it has helped a lot with my planning of shoots, not only for the full moon but to know what stage the moon is in and where it is in the sky so I can shoot without the moon. The other thing that I did was to add a calendar on my tablet to let me know the stages of the moon. Using the two of these tools it has made shooting a lot easier.
The only problem that I have been having is that every full moon for the past several months it has been nice before the moon is full but then the day it is to be full and the days after it has been cloudy. REALLY frustrating for trying to plan some shoots. Add to that the light winds that we have been having and long exposures have not been fun. The shoot shown below I had to shoot in RAW and then really add sharpening to take away from the shake of the camera and tripod because of the wind.
Or if you want a picture without the moon and need to know that the moon will not be in the picture this is great as well. Nothing like taking a picture with part of the moon in the picture and you did not want it there.
The other thing that I like about the programs that I am using is that I can locate the rising moon a week or more before and know exactly where the moon was going to rise. I was always finding out too late that the moon was rising above a great landmark and I was not able to be there to catch it. A number of times I was driving home and watching the moon rise and would have loved to do a picture of the moon with something in front of it like the windmill picture below. On my list still is to do a picture with the moon and a elevator and the moon and the reflection in a lake (one that is not frozen or with waves)