In the pale moonlight

moon glow2After the first rain storm of the season blew through Tracy I was driving home from work and saw the waning gibbous moon slowly rising through the scattered cloud remains of the storm.  I knew I had to get a shot this shot.

moon glow4

Shooting from the front door of my home I photographed the moon as it peered from behind the layers of clouds lingering form the rain storm earlier in the day.  I shot with a 300 mm f.4.0 lens keeping the ISO near 1600. I had a nice shot of the moon but I wanted the luminescent cloud bank as well.

moon glow3

I made several attempts to capture the eerie effect of the moonlight illuminating the clouds. To hold detail in both the moon’s surface and the layers of clouds proved difficult.  I often had an image that looked more like the sun in an black sky.

moon glowI ended up waiting almost an hour as I checked the progress through the sky. It eventually passed behind a cloud bank thick enough to lower the moon’s exposure to bring it within a few stops of the cloud bank. I braced the camera against the wall(i was too lazy to go for my tripod) and shot a series, bracketing the exposure as best I could. The successful image was 1/50 of a sec at f 4.0.