My moon images are a particular reminder of how many of my images are "made" rather than discovered. By that I mean I identify a subject, go there when I think the conditions will be best, then move around to align the elements.
Every month I mark my calendar with the best times for the full and crescent moonrise and moonset. I have a number of go-to locations for each event, both at popular spots within a few hours drive, such as Lake Tahoe and Yosemite, and at pre-scouted locations near home. I use the moon's azimuth on each of these days to determine where I want to be.
Since I don't do HDR ("high dynamic range" blending of digital images to expand the range of light captured), my crescent moon images are usually silhouettes. For my local go-to waning crescent locations I look for interesting shapes (usually a tree or trees) I can isolate against the western sky. I always select candidates knowing that if my subject isn't against the sky it will be lost against the background in the waning light.
For the February waning crescent there was no particular lunar/subject alignment that excited me, so I opted for the foothills east of town, ending up at this tree that has attracted me lately, atop a hill near a fairly well traveled country road just south of Folsom. Its hilltop location puts it against the sky, allowing me to walk closer and shoot up at it with a wide lens, or as I did here, stand back at road level and shoot across with a longer lens. The longer lens also makes the moon larger in the frame.
Camera or not, when viewing a scene like this, don't forget to simply appreciate what you're seeing. I don't think there are many things in nature more beautiful than a crescent moon, and I always make a point of simply taking in the view when I photograph one. Eventually the sky darkens to the point where the foreground subject is swallowed by the blackness, making a silhouette impossible--but that's when the moon is at its best and it's nice to stay out and simply take it in.
* Website: Eloquent Images
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