March 2018’s Second Full Moon

ISO 100, f/16, 1/125 sec, 300mm focal length

March 31st, 2018, 09:35 p.m. local time

It’s Springtime, which means temperatures are…dropping like the middle of Winter?  Yes, it’s true.  Forecasts call for lows back into the teens (Fahrenheit) by Easter Friday.  Stargazing visibility has been poor to pointless over the last week or so.

But on this final day and final night of March, the skies cleared while the wind howled.  The beaming Moon, contrasted to the blurry haze of last night’s, was too tempting a target not to get my camera and tripod out.  I stayed outside only for a few minutes, as the wind made it feel like January 31st all over again.

Tonight’s image came with a new experiment for me – color correction.  I followed the steps in this good video to find the image’s mid-gray, using PaintShop Pro.  I then did some minor sharpening, contrast, and brightness adjustments.

In other news, we are almost a month out now from Jupiter’s 2018 opposition.  The planet’s nighttime schedule is just about at the point where I can start looking at it again via telescope and taking pictures, on nights when I can stay up past midnight, and the weather cooperates.  Hoping this upcoming cold snap is brief and I can start getting outside again on clear nights.

Edit: After re-examining the above Moon picture the following morning, it seemed a bit too dark to me.  Here is the same picture but with the brightness and contrast notched up, just a bit.  Also, if you are using the WordPress default blog viewer, I recommend clicking on these pictures directly, as that viewer seems to be distorting/compressing the images, at least on my PC.

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