Learn to Photograph a Lunar Eclipse on Film From an Astrophotographer

How to Photograph a Lunar Eclipse on Film by Jason de Freitas

Australian photographer Jason de Freitas is recognized for his analog astrophotography. Though capturing the stars on movie could feel daunting, it is really not as challenging as you’d think. Recently, de Freitas took the time to split down his system for photographing a lunar eclipse on film.

These days, with most photographers doing the job digitally, this form of picture is just composited jointly in Photoshop. But for de Freitas, who will work in-digital camera, this was not an selection. He was looking to obstacle himself when he resolved to consider a many-exposure shot of the eclipse. Even though it would just take some mindful planning and analysis, the final result would be well really worth it.

Here’s a little bit of what went into making de Freitas’ amazing shot, which is now out there for purchase.


Producing the Setup

1st, de Freitas wanted to fully grasp what the composition would look like, so he applied a free planetarium software package termed Stellarium to prepare his photograph. Stellarium lets buyers to enter their sensor or film dimensions and then spits out a preview based mostly on the focal duration.

Lunar Eclipse Template by Jason de Freitas

Armed with that information, he created a Photoshop plan primarily based on the 600 mm lens he planned to use. The upcoming phase expected him to feel about how to assure that the moon was in the appropriate situation before he clicked the shutter. By creating a template on easy transparency paper, slash to the measurement of his viewfinder, he solved the problem. As soon as the template was set up, it was very clear in which the moon desired to be in the viewfinder to deliver the composition to existence.

The last action was to perform out the exposure, which was effortless adequate employing

Using Analog Camera to Photograph a Lunar EclipseUsing Analog Camera to Photograph a Lunar EclipseHow to Photograph a Lunar Eclipse by Jason de Freitas



Of training course, a person cannot attempt this sort of photograph with no the appropriate gear. De Freitas employed a Pentax 67ii with the Takumar 600mm f/4 on a SkyWatcher NEQ6 equatorial mount for the shoot. The equatorial mount ensured that he’d have excellent security even during very long exposure photographs.

Camera Setup for Photographing a Lunar Eclipse

So what was the most necessary piece of machines to make the shot transpire? “It’s a near race between the lens and the equatorial mount but I’d say the lens I employed was the most crucial,” de Freitas shares. “I feel I could have taken a equivalent shot from a strong tripod but not practically as sharp, nevertheless that would only be because of the lens I was applying. The lens is a ginormous Takumar 600mm f/4 that would conveniently be mistaken for getting a telescope. The huge aperture lets a large amount of gentle by means of for this kind of a prolonged focal length—and finding plenty of light-weight is the largest limitation with taking pictures astrophotography on movie. Without this lens, I would not have been ready to consider this shot on a medium structure slide and produce this special photographic artifact.”


Executing the Approach

The evening of the eclipse, almost everything commenced efficiently, as his template authorized him to effortlessly line up the shot. Having said that, as generally transpires in photography, you have to have to be ready for any problem. Right after getting the initial a few photographs productively, the camera did not register the multi-publicity lever and the film state-of-the-art when he took his fourth picture. Whilst this absolutely ought to have been discouraging, de Freitas only recalibrated his system and moved ahead with a partial eclipse to a partial eclipse sequence.


Establishing the Film

Camera Setup for Photographing a Lunar Eclipse

Digital images provides fast gratification, but due to the fact de Freitas was doing work in film, he required to wait around a little bit to see the fruits of his labor. Making use of a sous vide equipment to regulate the temperature, he produced the film in E6 chemistry. The outcomes ended up precisely as he’d hoped. He then digitized the photo for on the internet sharing and printing, even though however making programs to mount the slide in a projector.

The challenge finished in a success, which is extraordinary thinking about that it was a leap of religion. “In a way, the most complicated section of having this shot is that I only experienced a single chance to do it,” he told My Contemporary Satisfied. “I place in all this exertion to prepare out the specific finish consequence I preferred to accomplish but all through the total approach, I had extremely minor indicator of whether or not it would function out or not.”


Jason de Freitas: Internet site | Instagram

My Present day Met granted permission to feature pics by Jason de Freitas.

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