For the first time in nearly 50 years we were witness to a strawberry moon during summer solstice. I saw a few news headlines leading up to this historic event so I started planning a location to capture this rare moment. I used various tools to plan the photo including Google Earth and The Photographer’s Ephemeris. I wrote about planning tools last month. I chose the Zilker Park Clubhouse as the best vantage point as it has sweeping views of the Austin skyline. I knew the moon was going to align perfectly with the Colorado River (aka Lady Bird Lake) and the clubhouse. I wanted to get the reflection of the moon on the water.f
I was the first photographer to arrive but within minutes there were other photographers with the same idea, including a photographer for the local paper. Most of them brought their long lenses to take close-up shots. I decided to focus more on the overall skyline scene. Interestingly enough, most of them were guessing where the moon was going to rise. I assured them that they had the best vantage point in the city.
So, why is June’s full moon called a “strawberry moon”? It is not because the moon may look reddish, as most people believe. It is actually a name given by the Algonquin tribes because it occurs right at the hight of the season when strawberries are harvested. Unfortunately, our moon was not red or pink. It was its typical yellowish color. I suspect that storm clouds or haze would need to be present to make the moon turn pink.
This image was taken with my Canon EOS 5DS using my Canon EF 24-70 f/2.8 Lens set on 16 mm. The camera was set on Aperture priority mode with the aperture set at f/2.8, shutter speed at 1/30th of a second and the ISO set at 100. I captured two images (one to expose the buildings and another for the moon) and brought them together in Photoshop. I also used Nik Color Efex Pro.
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