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Talacre moonrise

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The story behind this video

It's a rare event in North Wales when the full moon rises and you can actually see it. Normally such astronomical phenomena occur behind heavy cloud and you can't see a thing.

So when the forecast predicted a clear sky evening, and the moon was due to rise eight minutes after sunset, I immediately started to think about places to go to shoot a timelapse sequence of the event.

The beach at Talacre was a no-brainer really. Running east to west, at the right time of year you can catch a sunrise, sunset, moonrise and moonset all on the same day without having to move your feet.

On this occasion Liz and I arrived in time to see a lovely sunset, which I tried to capture in timelapse using the long end of my 100-400mm zoom, but the blustery conditions made the resulting video very jerky.

Once the sun had set I knew I had eight minutes to set up to catch the moonrise, which I assumed would happen exactly opposite the just set sun.

So I set up accordingly, framing the derelict lighthouse to the left of the frame where I thought the moon would rise.

Well the eight minutes passed with no sign of the moon, so I looked up from the camera only to see the moon half risen already, but completely in the wrong place!

A lung busting run up the beach through mud and soft sand ensued, with tripod flailing like a set of demented bagpipes, as I rushed to re-position myself and start shooting before it was too late.

In the end I just made it. Fortunately the wind had dropped, the camera remained stable, and a shot every two seconds produced this rather nice sequence.

My only problem was the framing, as I had, in my haste, filled the viewfinder with the lighthouse so I couldn't subsequently use the standard HD video 16:9 crop, I had to use the 'old fashioned' 4:3 crop instead to make the video.

Maybe I'll give this particular scene another go in 6 months' time and see if I can get the framing correct.

Still, framing notwithstanding, I rather like this time lapse.

Video data

Filename - talacre timelapse 03.mp4

Camera - Canon 5D

Lens - 100-400mm zoom

Location - Talacre, North Wales

This clip - HD 720p