I'm so glad you found me! I'm a San Francisco photographer, and this blog charts my journey in the ever-evolving world of photography. One of the things I love about photography is that it's a journey, not a destination. I'm constantly learning and meeting wonderful people. Please peruse the blog to your heart's content, then check out my website and feel free to contact me! (I love hearing from you.)

“Which of my photographs is my favorite? The one I’m going to take tomorrow." – Imogen Cunningham

“A portrait is not made in the camera but on either side of it.” – Edward Steichen

Anatomy of an Image, Week 3

I thought this image of the moon might be an interesting choice for week three.
Mouse over to see the original. You may notice that I . . . ahem. . . . made the moon a bit larger. Well, there's only so far that a 55mm lens reaches, you know?

Let's take a look at the specs first, before we do anything else.
Focal Length: 55mm (shot with my trusty, almost never off-camera 17-55 f/2.8 Canon lens)
Shutter Speed: 1/1600 of a second
Aperture: f/3.5
ISO: 200
Time of day: Civil Twilight

A Little Bit of Explanation
Ok, so some of you might be scratching your heads right now. The moon comes out at night, right? And night photography in general calls for slow shutter speeds, and high ISOs. I totally agree, but if you're shooting the moon, you have to remember that the moon is a sunlit object, and to get any detail on the face of the moon you need to shoot it as such. In order to get the moon properly exposed I had to underexpose for the ambient light by probably about 4 stops. The sky was actually a light blue in color, and not this deep navy.

I knew I wanted the power lines to sort of frame the face of the moon, and that I didn't want much else getting in the way of the shot.

And With the Help of My Computer . . . 
I used Photoshop to copy only the moon onto another layer and then Edit: transform, scale, to make it a little larger. I held down the shift key as I changed the size of the moon so that the aspect ratio remained the same. I also increased the contrast on the moon itself and made the sky a bit deeper of a blue.

And that's pretty much it. Let me know what you think!


  1. Great job on that and I think almost everybody I know struggles with the moon exposure. (Especially some of the girls at work when they bend over - but that's a different subject) I learned that little principal many years ago, thanks to someone thoughtful like you taking the time and effort to explain it to me. This is also another excellent use of the mouse over technique.

  2. Nice shot. I have been enjoying looking at your photos this evening. I also made the moon a little larger in this photo I made in DC a couple weekends ago. Check it out. http://ffmitch.blogspot.com/2011/01/stainless-moon.html


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