These pictures of the moon were taken on an iPhone in the UAE
Many people across the world are getting ready to see the new moon that will mark Eid Al Fitr. But if you’d like to capture the moment, it turns out that you don’t need lots of extra equipment.
As part of Apple’s new ‘Shot on iPhone’ campaign, five Emirati amateur photographers took pictures of the moon at different lunar stages. Armed with only an iPhone 7 and a telescope, the group captured sharp close-ups of the moon from right here in the UAE.
The good news is that it's actually pretty easy to recreate the shots yourself. Andrew Symes, a Canadian Astrophotographer who guided the photographers during the activity, said: “You don’t have to be a professional to be able to capture the wonders of space. With just a few tips and a bit of practice, anyone with an iPhone and a basic telescope can shoot a close up photo of the moon, for example, that most certainly will impress friends and family.”
He revealed: “The trick to a great astronomical photo is capturing the right amount of detail and ensuring that the shot is not too bright or too dim. Your iPhone already gives you the ability to capture gleaming objects against a dark background easily, so just make sure to dim the moon by adjusting the exposure so that features like craters are visible and properly exposed. I highly encourage everyone to get a simple telescope and give it a try.”
- Simple telescope
- Clear night sky
Participating photographers Huda Bin Redha, Jameela Ahli, Iskander Ahmed, Samy Olabi and Mohamed Almahroos shared their tips for capturing the perfect lunar snap.
Step 1: Learn the phases of the moon. It’s easier to capture a moon shot during the first quarter of the lunar cycle which is when the moon is half full. Many craters and other interesting features are visible during this phase.
Step 2: Find the best time and place to shoot. Make sure you’re shooting when there’s a clear night sky with little to no light around as that will affect your photos. Consider going in the desert to find a good spot.
Step 3: Set up a telescope and line up your iPhone 7 with the eyepiece. Keep one hand free to tweak the settings and fix the angle of your shot.
Step 4: Turn off the flash. You won’t need it as the moon is bright.
Step 5: Tap and hold to lock focus. First you need to ensure that the focus is good through the telescope, then you need to lock in the focus on the phone. This is key to capturing a clear image of the moon.
Step 6: Drag to lower exposure. Because the moon is so bright relative to the night sky, the moon will be over-exposed. Manually swipe down to lower the exposure so the moon appears darker.
Step 7: Practice. As with most astronomical pursuits, your skills will improve with practice. Don’t be discouraged if your first shots are not perfect. You will eventually get your magic shot.