Last Supermoon Of 2019: Here’s How To Snap The Best Photos Of The ‘Super Full Worm Moon’

Here are 7 tips on how to shoot the supermoon like a pro, courtesy of NASA.

The full moon rising behind a tree.
Gerhard Gellinger / Pixabay

Here are 7 tips on how to shoot the supermoon like a pro, courtesy of NASA.

Tomorrow night, stargazers will be treated to a memorable celestial display in the form of the March full moon, also known as the “Worm Moon.” But this won’t be a typical full moon; as The Inquisitr recently reported, the 2019 “Full Worm Moon” will also be a supermoon — the third and final one of the year.

This means that tomorrow will be your last chance to see a supermoon light up the sky until next year. The next supermoon to grace the skies will be the 2020 “Snow Moon,” which rises on February 9.

Why You Won’t Want To Miss Tomorrow’s Full Moon

In 2019, sky watchers enjoyed the rare opportunity of witnessing three supermoons in a row — each one of them being special for a different reason. The first supermoon of 2019 was the “Super Blood Wolf Moon” of January, when the full moon coincided with a stunning lunar eclipse. Next came the “Super Full Snow Moon” of February, which was the nearest, biggest, and brightest of the trio, as reported by The Inquisitr last month.

Coming up, the “Super Full Worm Moon” will climb over the horizon at 9:43 p.m. ET on March 20 — occurring on the same day as the spring equinox. This makes it a particularly rare occasion, as this type of coincidence doesn’t come across too often. In fact, the last time that the vernal equinox was accompanied by a full moon was 19 years ago, in March of 2000. And, according to EarthSky.org, we’ll have to wait another 11 years – until March 2030 – to see it happen again.

As such, you will not want to miss the moonrise on Wednesday night. And, since the “Full Worm Moon” will double as a supermoon – meaning that it will appear significantly larger and more luminous than a regular full moon – you’ll have a great shot at capturing some amazing photos.

7 Tips On How To Take The Best Supermoon Photos

Here’s some great tips on how to shoot the supermoon like a pro, courtesy of NASA.

  1. Photograph The Moon Next To A Landmark

While the shining orb of the moon certainly looks eye-catching on the dark canvas of the sky, making it the sole focus of your frame may not necessarily be the best idea. Rather than shooting the moon by itself, picture it next to a known landmark to really make it pop, and make your photos stand out among all the others.

“Don’t make the mistake of photographing the moon by itself with no reference to anything,” says Bill Ingalls, NASA’s senior photographer. “Instead, think of how to make the image creative — that means tying it into some land-based object. It can be a local landmark or anything to give your photo a sense of place.”

Photo of the March 2011 supermoon taken by NASA photographer Bill Ingalls.
The ‘Super Full Worm Moon’ of 2011, photographed next to the Lincoln Memorial. Bill Ingalls / NASA
  1. Catch The Moon Close To The Horizon

One of the best strategies to snap a spectacular photo of the supermoon is to point your camera at the sky when the moon is close to the horizon. This means getting your shot early-on during the night, just in time to catch the full moon rise against the city line.

This will make the supermoon appear larger and more imposing in contrast to the outline of earthly objects, such as buildings and trees — a phenomenon known as the “moon illusion,” per a previous report from The Inquisitr.

  1. Plan Ahead

If you’re chasing that perfect low horizon snap, you might want to do some research beforehand and find out where the moon will appear on the horizon based on your location. You can do that by typing your city name on TimeAndDate to get the coordinates and exact time of the moonrise. Don’t hesitate to look up the location on Google Maps and to use any other apps that could help you find the precise spot. Another good idea is to scout out the area a day or more in advance to make sure you “get just the right angle at the right time,” advises Ingalls.

A full moon rising above Capitol Hill, in Washington D.C.
The 2012 ‘Snow Moon’ rising above Capitol Hill, in Washington D.C. Bill Ingalls/NASA / Getty Images
  1. Find An Edge

This can be figuratively, as in finding one unique element to make your photo remarkable, or quite literally, as in planning for a rooftop photo of the supermoon. You can either ask for permission to access rooftops or go another route and leave the city behind to travel to a remote, dark area, away from light pollution. This will grant you some splendid views of the sky.

Either way, let your creativity flow and make the best of your scenery. For instance, Ingalls recalls being worried about his shot of Comet Lulin – which he photographed in 2009 at Shenandoah National Park – because he didn’t have a telescope with him, unlike other photographers. To make his photo unique, he decided to use the red light of his headlamp to illuminate the forest while shooting the green comet with a long lens between the trees.

“The result was magical, with National Geographic naming his comet image one of the top 10 space photos of the year,” notes NASA.

You can check out the photo in question on the NASA website.

  1. Get Some People In The Frame

Ingalls recommends personalizing your photo of the glorious supermoon by using people in the shot.

“There are lots of great photos of people appearing to be holding the moon in their hand and that kind of thing. You can get really creative with it,” he points out.

The supermoon of August 10, 2014, seen over the The Peace Monument on the grounds of the United States Capitol.
The supermoon of August 10, 2014, seen over the The Peace Monument on the grounds of the United States Capitol. Bill Ingalls/NASA / Getty Images
  1. Use Your Smartphone

You don’t necessarily need fancy gear to snap a great photo of tomorrow’s supermoon. In fact, Ingalls believes that taking the photo with your smartphone could be quite a fun challenge.

“You’re not going to get a giant moon in your shot, but you can do something more panoramic, including some foreground that’s interesting. Think about being in an urban area where it’s a little bit brighter.”

  1. Use Advanced DSLR Techniques

In case you’re going with a digital single-lens reflex camera (DSLR), you might want to use the daylight white balance setting. According to Ingalls, this is the best setting to capture the moonlight, as the moon is actually reflecting the sun’s light.

The supermoon of September 27, 2015, photographed behind the Colorado State Capitol building in Denver.
The supermoon of September 27, 2015, photographed behind the Colorado State Capitol building in Denver. Bill Ingalls/NASA / Getty Images

If you’re planning to use a longer lens, Ingalls advises to “keep in mind that the moon is a moving object.”

“It’s a balancing act between trying to get the right exposure and realizing that the shutter speed typically needs to be a lot faster,” he says.

For more tips on how to photograph exquisite celestial displays, check out this previous report from The Inquisitr.