Sunday, 10 June 2012

Transition of Venus

  Well here we are in to the second week of June and I'm wondering what happened to spring. I would think over the whole of the spring period, we've only had around two weeks of what I would call spring-like weather. Despite that, the birds have been breeding and I'm now seeing lots of young birds around such as Lapwing, Redshank, Starling etc. The spring migration seems to have been quite average but none the less fairly enjoyable.

 The main event for me hasn't been the Queens Jubilee or the forthcoming Olympics in London, (the 'torch' is in Lerwick today) but the transition of Venus across the Sun. I was very lucky to see it back in 2004 when we lived down in the Cotswolds and had my fingers crossed for a clear sky this time.

  My alarm went off at just before 3am (having only got to bed just before midnight) and by 3.20am I was at the end of Lamba Ness just in time to see the sun start lifting up above the horizon. I quickly set up the camera on the tripod to get some pics......................

Lamba Ness 3.30am June 6th 2012

  It wasn't my intention to use the SLR to photograph the moment as I was concerned (rightly or wrongly) what effect the sun would have on the cameras sensor that had the equivalent of a 1120mm lens (in 35mm terms) attached to it. So what I did was to use the same method I used in 2004 and that was to use my birding telescope. I then projected the suns image on to a piece of card supported on a second tripod; all of this was covered by coats etc to block out any other light. It all worked fine but due to the wind, it made taking any pictures difficult so I headed back home.

  Setting it all up again at the back of the house where it had a bit of shelter from the north east wind I also had something better to throw over it all - my bag hide. To take the picture I used the 7D with my 24-105mm lens, 1/1000th sec at f5.6, 1600 ISO,  handheld.

 I have to admit that as I watched it move across the card, it did prove to be a thought provoking moment in how quickly time slips by ...........................

Baltasound 6th June 2012 5.20am


1 comment:

Christian said...

What a great image and insight into the lengths that you went to to produce it. Brilliant stuff.