As much as I’m torn up about writing this, I have a hard-learned lesson to share with you. As you might have guessed from the title of this post, it’s about missing an opportunity to get “the shot”. Most photographers cringe at the thought, and I’m still reeling from it. Anyway, here goes:
- Last night, my family and I were driving back from a day trip to Boston. We had just left Logan Airport where we dropped off my wife’s mother and sister. As we were getting back on US Route 1 my wife says, “Hey, look at the moon!” When I looked off to my right, my heart sank. (I always have my camera with me, but here’s where I blew it last night.) The full moon was low in the sky and was only reflecting a small amount of light from the sun. On top of that, there was a perfect line of clouds in front of it. I was thinking about pulling over and grabbing my camera when it hit me; it’s 6:30 PM and completely dark AND I DON’T HAVE MY TRIPOD!!! As dim as the moon was, there was no way I could have gotten a tack sharp, hand-held shot with a low ISO setting and a Nikon 18-135mm 3.5 zoom lens. If I had a VR lens I might have given it a shot, but without the VR or a tripod it wasn’t going to happen. When you are zoomed in tight or using a telephoto lens in low light, you have to be on a tripod if you want your images to be tack sharp. VR or IS will help, but you should use a tripod whenever possible.
So there you have it, another lesson learned. Some people may ask why I would want to put myself out there (like I just did), but I want to share my experiences with others so they too can avoid these headaches and have a better chance of getting “the shot”.