The Super Flower Blood Moon of 2021

I love to gaze at the Moon, but especially, I love to gaze at a full Moon.

Captured May 26 @ 6:37 pm

– ⋅ o ♥ o ⋅ –

Delight abounds within me when the Moon is at perigee – its point of orbit when it’s nearest the Earth – making the Moon ‘Super’. Although I must admit, I think the Moon is super all the time regardless of its orbit phase.

And yet, I must also admit, my delight turns to pure bliss when there’s an added element that enhances my lunar affliction, such as when an eclipse occurs.

– ⋅ o ♥ o ⋅ –

Lunar eclipses come in all shapes and sizes.

There are Penumbral Lunar Eclipses where the Moon passes through Earth’s penumbral shadow – that’s the partially shaded outer region of the Earth’s shadow. I read somewhere that these types of eclipses are ‘of academic interest only’ because . . . they are subtle and hard to observe.

My interest has nothing to do with academia. I’ll get out of bed in the middle of the night to look skyward and take photos even if I then think the event was a no-show because it was subtle and hard to observe.

– ⋅ o ♥ o ⋅ –

There are Partial Lunar Eclipses where a portion of the Moon passes through Earth’s umbral shadow – that’s the dark central portion of the Earth’s shadow. These types of eclipses are not subtle and are easily seen. I even read somewhere where someone said they “are not subtle and are easily seen even with the unaided eye!“.

That made me laugh, and again, I’ll get out of bed pre-dawn to observe the shadow the Earth casts across the surface of the Moon.

– ⋅ o ♥ o ⋅ –

Then finally, there are Total Lunar Eclipses where the Moon passes through the Earth’s entire umbral shadow. This is a striking, major event, not to be missed if you happen to be in the right place at the right time.

During a total lunar eclipse, the Moon turns a vibrant red when it reaches totality – the moment or duration of total obscuration – due to the effect of Rayleigh scattering on the tiny particles of gas that make up the Earth’s atmosphere. Those minute particles are more likely to scatter blue wavelengths of light while allowing the redder wavelengths to pass through. Keeping in mind that sunlight contains the entire spectrum of visible colour, Rayleigh scattering explains why the sky is blue and sunrises and sunsets are often red.

So, throughout the totality of a lunar eclipse, red light is able to pass through the Earth’s atmosphere and is then refracted towards the Moon and blue light is filtered out resulting in the Moon taking on a reddish hue. (I love sciencey stuff.)

The last total lunar eclipse I was able to photograph (and probably also the first) was back in July 2018.

– ⋅ o ♥ o ⋅ –

So what do you get when there’s a full Moon is at perigee, during May, and it passes through the Earth’s umbral shadow?

You get a Super Flower Blood Moon (queue the howling wolves 😂) and, last night, it was visible throughout Oceania, Hawaii, eastern Asia, and Antarctica. I was not in Antarctica last night but, must say, that would have been cool. But I do live on the east coast of Australia, one of the best locations to view the entire eclipse, and I did just that, clicking away, trying my best to get a good shot – though this proved harder than it might otherwise be.

True to predictions, the Earth’s shadow started to creep across the Moon at 7:44 pm
At 7:55 pm, the shadow was more evident.

My camera’s only ‘Point ‘n Click’, and I’m not a photographer, so it was a little bit of a struggle to get a clear shot.

8:18 pm it was getting difficult.
By 8:35 pm, it was getting dark, and my camera started to struggle in earnest.

At this stage, I attached my camera to my tripod. But that didn’t make much difference either. I couldn’t keep the camera still AND point it almost directly overhead.

8:54 pm trouble was setting in.

After Dean helped secure the camera to the tripod, I just did the best I could, gazing at the Moon and clicking away every now and then, hoping I would get a decent shot to remember when the Moon turned red in May 2021 when totality was between 9:11 pm and 9:18 pm

I think this was the (my) money shot.

9:34 pm

Here’s a close up.

9:34 pm

It wasn’t long then before the Earth’s shadow ‘moved along’ and the Moon began to brighten once again.

10:19 pm

And it was around this time that a few clouds rolled in and I decided to call it quits. I’d been outside for almost fours hours at that stage and that’s not me complaining.

I would never complain about gazing at the Moon.

When I got out of bed this morning, I decided to step outside again to say hello to a heavenly body I often refer to as My Dear ol’ Friend!

May 27 @ 5:57 am

Author: Clare

Ever expanding one star at a time, my cosmos is a galaxy of thoughts and creativity where you can find poetry, short stories, photography and so much more.

7 thoughts

  1. Outstanding! I love our moon tooooooo!
    I did not bring my good camera to the LakeHouse… just had too much to pack. I may have to buy one for here…
    But anyhoo… I love seeing your moon pictures… thank you my friend!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. 🥰 yes I think you need to spoil yourself cause we need to see your photos too. Thank you, Nancy. You must be my biggest fan when it comes to my Moon photos. I do love taking and sharing photos of it as often as I can.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. I was playing with two cameras and have a serious number of shots because I can’t help myself 🥰 I love the Moon – it’s my ruler.

      Like

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