Waxing Moon in Early July

Picture dates: July 10, 2022

I read Wednesday (July 13) that we had a super moon. On Sunday (July 10) I stepped outside around 10 PM before going to bed. Looking up over my shoulder I saw the moon coming up over the trees. While it wasn’t full, it was big, bright, beautiful. I went back inside to grab a camera thinking “nothing fancy; just a quick handheld picture”. Of course it turned out to be more involved.

Sony A6600. .8 sec @ f/5.0, ISO 6400

I couldn’t even get the moon in focus (I think it was too bright). What to do? To get a nice picture I’d have to break out my tripod and get serious. Okay, I’m in! I came back out with two cameras. My 1-inch sensor Sony RX10 IV with a full frame equivalent zoom of 600mm and my Sony A6600 with a Tamron 18-300 lens. First up was the RX10. I used Aperture mode; reduced the exposure compensation to -3.0; knocked down the ISO down to 400 This allowed me to actually see the features of the moon. Here is the image after a few tonal adjustments in Lightroom and size adjusted in Topaz Gigapixel

Sony RX10M4; 1/250 sec @ f/4.0, ISO 400, EV -3.0

When adjusting the settings I wanted to make sure the shutter speed was pretty fast; although it doesn’t seem like it, the moon/earth is moving fast enough that a slow shutter speed would result in a blurry image.

As I was writing this post I thought, I wonder if Topaz Sharpen AI could bring out some more of the details.

Same image as above with sharpening added via Topaz Sharpen AI.

Okay, now that it’s nice and sharp, let’s crop in some more…

Same image as above, cropped

Not too shabby for a 1-inch sensor camera.

Next I put my A6600 on the tripod. For this shot I used Shutter priority mode; set the Exposure value to -5.0; and set the ISO to 250. I did the same post processing steps: minor tonal adjustments and some cropping in Lightroom, followed by resizing in Topaz Gigapixel AI

Sony A6600 with Tamron 18-300 lens. 1/640 sec @ f/6.3. ISO 250. EV -5

Then I used Topaz Sharpen AI to bring out some of the details.

Same image as above; sharpened with Topaz Sharpen AI

Once sharpened, shouldn’t we zoom in a bit?

Same image as above, cropped.

If you zoom in on the two heavily cropped images you’ll see some noise start to creep in. I planned to go out a few days later to get the full super moon, but it is so late by the time the moon clears the trees and I’m still recovering from my COVID bout, I was in bed.

I’m struck by the relatively unmarked “seas” in the middle of the moon. Could this be the result of the east shielding this hemisphere from direct hits. It seems to me that there are many more impact craters on the top and bottom especially. I could look it up; maybe later.

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