The Moon besides Venus astrophotography

Moon & Venus side-by-side - Nikon D300 with Nikkor AF ED 80-200mm f/2.8D lens @ f/5.6 ISO 200 1/200th on Induro CT214 with Nikon MC-30 cable releaseAs I was driving home from the dog park yesterday evening with Kiki, I noticed the Moon and Venus in unusual positions:  side-by-side of each other.  Usually I find Venus to be below the Moon.  In the above photograph this does not look as peculiar as it did to the naked eye, but in order for Venus to show up in the shot at all, I had to fill the frame with them as much as possible.  It kind of looked like they were friends, just hanging out next to each other.  

This is a very easy kind of astrophotograph to make, if you use manual mode.  One must choose a shutter speed carefully.  Too long of a shutter speed, even like 1/80th of a second will result in the moon looking just like a white disc.  So the one tricky part was finding a balance of exposing the Moon as well as possible while still having Venus be visible.

Also, even though I used a relatively fast shutter speed of 1/200th, handholding this type of shot is not advised.  Using a stable tripod makes it much easier.  In addition, I used a cable release to further reduce shake.  There is no money better spent in photography than on a no-compromises tripod.

this image is available for commercial license & fine art print - contact Jason today