The above shot of the moon was from just after 2AM following a clear shot at midnight. For those of you who follow my work you know by now I'm obsessed with the moon. Partly that it is central to our mythology as Puget Sound Salish people known as Dakwibalth or in English translations the 'transformer' or 'changer'. Even so had I not been born into my culture I have a feeling that I'd have an affinity for the moon but may not be getting up at odd hours of the night to document it by camera, who knows.
For months I had planned to shoot this next blood moon phase and had looked up a lens rental and held that aside but tonight, it didn't turn out as hoped vs the last blood moon shoot. I had to make a tough call for this because renting an 800mm lens runs about $400 and with the weather being as unpredictable from hour to hour I just couldn't swing it. That said I still got outta bed at midnight, then 2am then 3:30 and again at 4:30AM. As in the days of my son being a baby except I willingly did this without cries of a baby somehow. Anyway, as I stated, it didn't work out as planned but in a good way I think. After months of prep and fingers crossed making that decision mid week was tough to pass on the lens.
Driving home this evening around 8ish I saw a break in the clouds and could see the moon clearly from the freeway in south Tacoma. It went off and on but overall it had good clearing well into the morning. I took photos on the tripod with the canon using my 70-200mm on a solid tripod and pan head. I opted for this set up over my 300mm partly for focus control and lens speed if the clouds rolled thru I'd have quicker responsiveness with the 70-200 ISM II set up.
All seemed great to the hour of 4AM when I was starting to hate myself. Man oh man, how could I let this happen. It's Spring coming along here and I missed this opportunity because the clearing came. I did the best I could shooting in RAW files, using my tripod taking as many shots with two tiers of exposures for sake of flexibility to choose from. At 4:30AM I took one more shot and went back inside guestimating the blood moon would reveal in that next 15-20 minutes. Grabbing winks of rest with one hand on my puppy and another on the arm rest of the couch I pulled myself up to go out again with camera in hand. From nowhere all the clouds rolled in and by eye I could barely make out a sliver of the moon. I was both happy and devastated. On one hand I had the comfort of knowing my decision opting out of the long lens expense was justified, on the other I was missing the blood moon at the point of it's pinnacle. I come back inside to write and accept that in life sometimes you get them and sometimes you don't.
It's moments like these in life that reveal things about ourselves. In me I see my commitment to admire something in so many ways and share that with the world when it permits. And yet a lesson to me that despite the loss this time when the next phase comes I know I will be there like a surfer waiting on a wave after just having crashed in a swell. It is the resilience and desire to capture the moment I suppose. Ok, time to sleep now...