How can we shoot moon using kit lens?
Star Trails Photography
January 8, 2017

Moon forms an integral part of the night sky. It displays its magnificence so vividly that it can easily be titled the queen of the night sky. Every single person, at least for once, has admired the moon. It is a nature lover’s gift. It is a poet’s paradise. And moon is a photographer’s ambition. Photography of the moon has been experimented over and over again for the past several years. And shooting the moon is a trend that will never stop but continue forever. The reasons are obvious. A beautiful shot of the queen is so essential in every photographer’s CV.



Let’s discuss the ways to do this:

The moon being so very far away, a telephoto lens becomes essential. But they come with a hefty price tag. Instead of going that way let us discuss about the chances you have of having a nice shot of the moon with your kit lens.Let’s choose beginner level dslr, for example the Nikon D3100 with the 18-55mm kit lens.

Weather conditions – Try to shoot when there are no clouds. Even a bit of cloud can disturb your focus. Choose an absolute clear night sky to bring make your subject stand out.

Composition – Be creative with your composition. Simply shooting the moon by keeping it at the center of your frame will also result in fantastic shots but to add some foreground to it, you can include trees or even clouds.

ISO – Keep your ISO down at 100. You will have to make sure the ISO is not bringing any grain to your photograph.

Aperture and Shutter speed – Play with the aperture. Vary it between f/5.6 and f/11. You need to have the moon in focus to make it stand out. Aperture plays a crucial part in this. Keep a fast shutter speed at around 1/200 sec – 1/250 sec with your aperture down at f/11. I have got some nice shots with these settings. You may also get good shots having your aperture wider at f/5.6 with your shutter speed down at 1/25 of a second. Try comparing them in order to get the best result. For shooting the moon, you will have to play the old game of hit and trial to capture the best photograph but it is fun.



A teleconverter (if possible) - Use a teleconverter if you have. Perhaps a 2x teleconverter will increase your focal length to more than 100mm.

Focus - Try the autofocus feature of your camera. I am not sure it will work the best but if it does, you are lucky. In any case, you must try manual focusing. I am sure this will give you better results.

Post production – Change the white balance to whatever mode you wish to. You can have it warm or cool to produce different effects. Reduce the noise grain, if any.



A nice photograph of a moon is a very basic asset to possess. Try it!

Star Trails Photography
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The night sky has been a subject of photography for a long time. When captured properly, it looks majestic. It's a delight to the eye of the viewer and an asset for the photographer. I will focus on capturing photographs