The title is Latin for ‘the moon and the sun’, and seemed to me fitting for a pair of images I captured during a trip to the Outer Banks last week.

Figure 1. Moon behind clouds with night sky over Nags Head, N.C. Photo: author.

The first (figure 1) is an astrophoto in effect. Were the moon visible, it would have been too bright to permit us to see the foreground and stars. Happily, it popped behind the clouds, which diminished the contrast in the image. Its beams reach down through the clouds to the sea, and there is enough light bouncing off the clouds that the surf is bright enough to register. The moonlight also gives the sky a pleasing blue cast.

Stars, clouds, and sea all move from the viewpoint of the camera and are blurred in this 15-second exposure in proportion to their angular velocity.

Figure 2. Sun behind clouds over Nags Head, N.C. Photo: author.

The same situation holds in figure 2, but with the following morning’s incomparably brighter sun in place of the moon. The scattering of the blue light in the sky has blotted out all the stars, and by day the clouds stand out for their obscuring darkness, whereas by night they stood out thanks to their silver linings. Needless to say, the fast exposure during the day has frozen everything still.

Nikon Z 7ii.

Figure 1. Nikkor 14-24 mm f/2.8 lens, 16 mm, f/2.8, ISO 8000, 15 s.
Figure 2. Nikkor 24-70 mm f/2.8 lens, 50 mm, f/8, ISO 64, 1/320 s.

Editing was mostly done with the Apple Photos app on my iPad.

Published by gsb03632

A college professor living in Scranton, PA

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