OP – The Blog

March 1st, 2013

Chasing the Moon

Posted By Joseph Rossbach

On the very last evening of my trip to the southwest, I spent the night in Valley of Fire State Park. I knew the full moon would be rising 10 ¬†minutes after sunset, and I planned to catch it coming up through Elephant Rock just after sunset. I was up on White Domes shooting sunset and after finishing up quickly hiked off the sandstone and drove to Elephant Rock.I was happy to see that the clouds on the horizon were still picking up a little light from the twilight glow as the moon made it’s way up over the mountains. ¬†I quickly scrambled up the hill and behind the arch looking due east. This is a single exposure at 8 seconds @ F8, ISO 800 which not only picked up the glow of the moon and the color in the clouds, but also the brightest stars in the sky as well. To be honest, those stars were barley visible to the naked eye, but captured well at the high ISO. In post, I did basic tonal and color work in Lightroom V4 before moving the image into Photoshop for some advanced luminosity masking for dodging and burning. The image was finally brought back into Lightroom and I used the adjustment brush to paint the sky, removing any noise that built up from the exposure and processing. The resulting image is clean and can be printed very large to over 60+ inches! Man I love the quality and dynamic range of the new D800.

We have several opening for a few upcoming workshops this spring and early summer.






Please leave a comment

  1. SamanthaLyn Samuelson Says:

    Enchanting! Thanks for the information on the making of this image, as I love knowing more about night photography. Please see my “Moonrise, Colorado” at

  2. SamanthaLyn Samuelson Says:

    Guess that you don’t reply to posts, Joseph, here on the blog.

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