What’s the best way to photograph the lunar eclipse?

To take a picture of the supermoon or the lunar eclipse with a smartphone, tap on the moon on the screen and hold your finger in place to lock the camera’s focus. Then adjust the exposure slider that appears next to your finger to get the right balance of light for your shot.

If you’re using a DSLR, NASA’s senior photographer Bill Ingalls recommends that you use the daylight white balance to adjust for the sunlight being reflected off the moon. He says that it’s important 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.”

To get an original shot, Ingalls suggests taking a picture that puts the moon in context of a local landmark, something that gives your photo a sense of place. “Don’t make the mistake of photographing the moon by itself with no reference to anything,” say Ingalls. “Everyone will get that shot.”

Image for article titled For the first time in over 150 years, a supermoon, blue moon, and total lunar eclipse coincide in the Western Hemisphere
Image: Bill Ingalls/NASA

Do I need special glasses to watch the supermoon and lunar eclipse?

Unlike the solar eclipse, the supermoon and the lunar eclipse are safe to view with the naked eye. There’s nothing to worry about if you find yourself enthralled and staring up into the sky for a very long time. Except maybe your neck.

Correction: The headline and text of this story have been corrected to indicate that the coincidence of a super moon, blue moon and lunar eclipse had not occurred over the Western Hemisphere for more than 150 years. It had incorrectly stated that the coincidence had not been seen worldwide in that timespan. The story was also updated with details of the timing of how the eclipse would unfold from partial to full.

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