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Category Archives: Santa Cruz CA

©2017 Deborah M. Zajac  ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

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Nikon Df| Nikkor 28-105mm| Delkin Digital Film| PS CC 2017

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Copyright ©2017 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

I stayed close to home this past week-end after having been gone for two week-ends in row. It was nice hanging out with He-Man at home.  Saturday we got in a morning hike, but left later than we should have. By 9am it was already 82°.  We selected a trail that would lead us up to the Redwoods, and Oaks and shade.

We spent the rest of the afternoon indoors with air conditioning.

Saturday evening a good friend and I headed over the hill to Santa Cruz to our traditional Full Moon over the Walton Lighthouse shot.  If you’ve been following me awhile you’ll have seen this lighthouse on my blog before featuring the Moon. I shot the July Moon over this lighthouse last year. Click here.

The weather over the hill was the complete opposite of home. It was still in the 80’s when we left San Jose, but it was in mid 60’s with a breeze on the coast.  I couldn’t get into my hoodie, and wind-breaker fast enough.  I even broke out my gloves!

I set up my rig where I had plotted the Moon to line up over the Lighthouse, but was prepared to move quickly if I needed to adjust my position.  Here’s where we first spotted the Moon rising.  It was faint due to the low marine layer in the air.

Walton Lighthouse and Thunder Moon

We relocated down to the shore and soon the Moon lined up over the Lighthouse.

Copyright © Deborah M. Zajac
ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

This is a two frame blended composited image.  The base image had a clear view of the water, and good Moon/lighthouse alignment, but the light wasn’t shining in the Lighthouse so, I blended in the shot right after this one which had the light on. Why not just use that shot you might be asking? Three people walked into the frame obscuring the water.  So, I took the best of both frames blending them together to make the image I wanted to make.

Friday night I went out to the backyard to photograph the Waxing 98.8% Moon.  This is slightly cropped.

July Buck Moon Waxing 98.8%

The July Moon is called Thunder Moon

“Named due to the prevalence of summer thunder storms. It’s sometimes referred to as the Full Buck Moon because at this time of the year, a buck’s antlers are fully grown.”~ https://uk.news.yahoo.com/complete-list-every-full-moon-141136773.html

Since I rarely hear the Thunder but, do see Bucks I think of it more as the Full Buck Moon.

Sunday was a pretty lazy day. I won’t lie. I. Was. A. Slug. 🙂 It was too hot to do much outside although it was cooler by a few degrees.

I hope you had a lovely week-end, and you have a wonderful week!

Nikon Df| Nikkor 200-500mm| SanDisk Digital Film| PS CC 2017

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Copyright © Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

I met up with one of the photography groups I belong to at Santa Cruz’s Walton Light Station for sunrise this week-end.  We hoped for more clouds, but the weather changed from cloudy to clear late in the week so we knew it wouldn’t be very colorful, and yet there was some warm color, and a lovely glow low on the horizon as the sun was approaching.

Walton Light Station Dawn

But turning to my left looking northeast across the channel  there were clouds and some color.

Harbor Channel Santa Cruz Dawn

For the history buffs:

Located at the northern end of Monterey Bay, Santa Cruz Harbor is a haven for fishing craft and vessels. A harbor light, located at the west jetty, has marked its entrance for forty years. The original light was a box light structure which served from 1964 – 1996. It was replaced by a cylinder nicknamed “the water heater” which was used from 1996 – 1999. From 1999 until May 2002, a simple pipe structure held the light which marked the way into the harbor.

In 1998, the Santa Cruz community, under the leadership of Bill Simpkins and Jim Thoits, proposed replacing the unsightly harbor light with a lighthouse of classic design, adding a little more character to a community renowned for its characters. Fundraising efforts began in earnest, and with the contributions of many people, including a major donation from Charles Walton of Los Gatos, enough money was raised to begin construction of the new lighthouse in 2001.

The lighthouse, designed by Mark Mesiti-Miller and constructed by Devcon Construction, Inc., stands 41 ½ feet tall above the level of the west jetty, and 59 ½ feet above the mean low water mark. It weighs 350,000 pounds and is built to withstand a quarter million pounds of wave energy.

The construction began with a cylindrical inner core which houses electrical equipment and a circular staircase of forty-two steps which lead to the top of the lighthouse. Surrounding the inner core is a network of reinforcement rods, onto which “shotcrete” was blown and then hand-troweled to form the conical shape. These shotcrete walls are 4 ½ feet thick at the base. Finally, a durable weatherproof white finish was applied to the exterior of the lighthouse and a copper roofed lantern room topped it all off.

On June 9, 2002, the new harbor lighthouse was dedicated, and the signal, a green light flashing every four seconds at a focal plane of thirty-six feet, was activated. It is named the Walton Lighthouse, in honor of Mr. Charles Walton’s late brother, Derek, who served in the merchant marines and was lost at sea during World War II.” ~lighthousefriends.com

It was worth the O’Dark Thirty wake up alarm, and drive over the hill I thought.

Nikon Df| Nikkor 28-105mm| Delkin Digital Film| PS CC 2017 & On1

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Copyright ©2016 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

A friend and I went over the hill to Santa Cruz, CA this month to photograph the Moon rising above Walton Lighthouse.   We both really like having water in the image, and pretty foregrounds.

We knew there wouldn’t be much time to shoot since the Moon would need time to climb to get above the Lighthouse, and it’s getting dark earlier.

When we got out of the car and looked at the horizon and lighthouse we groaned. There was a thick band of fog just sitting on the horizon.  We wouldn’t see the Moon until it got above that! Time wouldn’t be on our side.

The sun had set and the sky was getting darker…finally I saw the top of the Moon above the fog bank.

Harvest Moon 2016

The Moon got high enough for me to make it out almost completely.

2016 Harvest Moon

It finally got out of the Fog only to be obscured again.  I tried to get a few more images, but it was getting too dark to keep the foreground in the image, and I wanted that.  I was also a bit frustrated with the wind, and shaking from the passing cars which shook my rig, and the pier I was photographing from. I deleted quite a few blurry images.

The color of the Moon was gorgeous though, and it was big being so close to the horizon. It would have looked much larger when it was just above that tree line if I could have seen it then.  Maybe next month. 🙂

“The September Moon is called the Harvest Moon or Corn Moon because this is the time to finish harvesting the corn and other crops before Winter. The bright moonlight gives farmers a little extra time to harvest their crops before the first day of Fall. “~sfgate.com

Nikon Df| Nikkor 200-500mm| Delkin Digital Film| PS CC 2015.5

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Copyright ©2016 Deborah M. Zajac  ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

The July Full Moon is called the “Buck Moon” in North America because male Deer are usually beginning to grow their antlers again in July.
The July Full Moon also has two other names. The Hay Moon; July is when Farmers begin storing their Hay, and the Thunder Moon because of the many thunder storms in the month of July.

I made this image in Santa Cruz, CA. The Moon looks large because it’s close to the horizon. Being on the coast there was a lot of moisture/atmosphere in the air, and the fog was slowly rolling in from the southeast so, the Moon looks a bit diffused.

The Moon was so pretty in the pink reflected light of the Belt of Venus. The pink part of the sky after sunset is called the Belt of Venus. It’s a phenomenon that happens after sunset and before sunrise. “The dark band of the Earth’s shadow at dusk and dawn often has a light pink arch above it, known as the Belt of Venus. It extends about 10-20 degrees up from the horizon, acting as a boundary between the shadow and the sky. The effect is due to the reddened sunlight being backscattered in the atmosphere, which produces the rosy glow.”~http://www.howitworksdaily.com/what-is-the-belt-of-venus/

Full Buck Moon

as the Moon rose higher it began to turn more Golden.

Full Buck Moon Twilight

Then it was time to head home.

Nikon Df| Nikkor 200-500mm| Delkin Digital Film| Tripod

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Copyright © 2015 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

After the Storm DEDPXL08

Nikon Df| AF-S Nikkor 17-35mm f/2.8 + BW 6 StopND Filter| Tripod| Hoodman STEEL Ultra High Speed Digital Film| CS6| Silver Efex Pro 2

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