Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Pushing my small camera's limits

kw: photography, photographs, techniques

 This morning I happened to awake quite early, so I was heading for my car prior to sunrise. Looking over my shoulder, I saw the Moon near Venus. I grabbed the camera I always carry in my lunch bag, and snapped this, zoomed all the way out (3X). I could see that, handheld with a 1/6-sec exposure, it was rather blurry. Also, the camera had focused on the leaves, which while still blurry are sharper than the Moon.

It took me a couple of minutes to run back inside and grab my mini-tripod, and then to back my car up so I could use it for a base. I took another shot with the leaves in the frame, and finally this one for which the camera focused on the Moon. Much better. There is just one thing missing in this shot, that does show up in the first one: Earthshine is just barely visible in the upper image. In the few minutes between the images, the sky brightened to the point that it swamped the Earthshine. This exposure was 1/15 second, so the sky brightness had more than doubled.

I'll have to await another occasion that I can get a sharp picture of the Moon with Earthshine. Getting Venus in the same frame is probably not in the cards. The residual blurriness in the second image is primarily due to the inexpensive optics in the Canon SD1200. Both images are 1080x720 pixel clips out of 10Mpx frames (7.8% of the frame).

No comments: