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All photos © Tony’s Takes. Images are available for purchase as prints or as digital files for other uses. Please don’t steal; my prices aren’t expensive. For more information contact me here.
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Sun, Moon and Stars

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The setting moon at sunrise

The setting moon at sunrise. A very pretty scene this past Saturday. As the sun rose in the east and cast its warming rays on the landscape, to the west, everything was aglow and a setting near-full moon dotted those beautiful blue skies. Taken at the Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge.

As the sunrise illuminates the landscape, the full moon sets in the west. (© Tony’s Takes)

As the sunrise illuminates the landscape, the full moon sets in the west. (© Tony’s Takes)

Fall colors and the daytime crescent moon

At the end of my photo drive this past Sunday, I swung through St. Vrain State Park, Colorado. There was one particular spot that had a number of birch trees absolutely with absolutely gorgeous fall foliage. I hopped out and shot those trees from just about every angle possible with my wide angle lens. At one point, I glanced up and see the somewhat faint crescent moon through the canopy of leaves. It looked awesome against that deep blue Colorado sky so I went back to my truck and grabbed my other camera with my big zoom lens and returned to capture a bunch of images of our only natural satellite and the leaves.

Fall foliage and the daytime crescent moon in Colorado. (© Tony’s Takes)

Fall foliage and the daytime crescent moon in Colorado. (© Tony’s Takes)

Solar eclipse shows the diamond ring and prominences

When I look back on my photo year, there can be no doubt that the solar eclipse was the single biggest event. It is hard to describe just how extraordinary it was to experience and capture it.

This is one of my favorite stages of the event, just as totality was coming to an end. You see the ‘diamond ring effect’ of the sun beginning to emerge from behind the moon.

Also notable are the appearance of prominences – the pink / red ‘flames’ you see in the image shooting out. These are somewhat like solar flares except they don’t actually leave the surface of the sun. Made of plasma and capable of extending hundreds of thousands of miles from the surface, they are normally only visible from Earth during an eclipse so seeing them is a big treat.

The total solar eclipse starts to end showing the diamond ring effect and solar prominences. (© Tony’s Takes)

The total solar eclipse starts to end showing the diamond ring effect and solar prominences. (© Tony’s Takes)

The Milky Way over Rocky Mountain National Park

Escaping to Colorado’s high country affords you peace and quiet away from the busy Front Range and at night, goodness, the stars you can see are breathtaking.

On this particular evening a couple of weeks ago, I took a short hike from where we were camped to take it all in. Looking south across the Moraine Park area, the darkness was all enveloping but with no light pollution, above were millions of points of light. The Milky Way was working its way across the sky and, in this capture, if you look toward the top you will even see a meteor streaking through.

While I certainly took pictures, I also made sure to stop and sit and just look and listen, taking it all in.

The Milky Way and a faint meteor in the skies over Moraine Park. (© Tony’s Takes)

The Milky Way and a faint meteor in the skies over Moraine Park. (© Tony’s Takes)

Video: Top shots from Summer 2017

The calendar says that is a wrap on summer 2017 and Mother Nature seems to agree given the change in the weather the last couple of days. I sat down this evening and put together a video collection of my favorite images from the season. Goodness. I am so thankful to have been able to capture images of such amazing creatures and scenes. I hope you enjoy the show!

A smokey full moon

Taken during the Harvest Moon last week. As I have written about and posted pictures of recently, smoke from wildfires in Oregon and Montana blanketed Colorado for the better part of a week. While the cause is saddening, this led to some awesome colors at sunrise, sunset and in this case, a moonrise.

The September full moon is colored in orange from smoke from wildfires in Montana and Oregon. (© Tony’s Takes)

The September full moon is colored in orange from smoke from wildfires in Montana and Oregon. (© Tony’s Takes)

The red sun of Krypton

Fans of Superman will get the reference there. 😉

As I mentioned yesterday, the last few days have seen our normally clear, blue Colorado skies obscured with smoke from wildfires in Oregon and Montana. Yesterday morning as I arrived at my photo destination right at sunrise, I couldn’t help but take note of the rather odd coloring of the sun.

The smoke gave it distinctive red coloring and the light was so filtered, I was able to shoot directly at it without any sort of filter. There were even a few sunspots easily visible. Kind of cool but also kind of eerie.

Haze and smoke from wildfires in the western United States colors the rising sun in red. (© Tony’s Takes)

Haze and smoke from wildfires in the western United States colors the rising sun in red. (© Tony’s Takes)

The Milky Way as seen from the Wyoming plains

During a recent visit to our neighboring state to the north, I took the opportunity to get out and do some astrophotography. I don’t really have the right gear to do this justice (need a faster lens) but it is fun to go out and see what I can come up with. Here you do get a pretty good view of our galaxy although there were a few, light clouds that intruded on the view.

A view of the Milky Way as seen from southeastern Wyoming.  (© Tony’s Takes)

A view of the Milky Way as seen from southeastern Wyoming. (© Tony’s Takes)

A view of the Milky Way as seen from southeastern Wyoming.  (© Tony’s Takes)

A view of the Milky Way as seen from southeastern Wyoming. (© Tony’s Takes)

Photo slideshow captures the Great American Eclipse

I don’t know how many “amazing” adjectives I can use to describe the solar eclipse last week and my being under the path of totality. More than a week later I still can’t believe it. The problem is that I don’t know how best to depict the photos I took of the event. The collage I shared last week did a good job I think and now I took some of the images and put them into a video slideshow. What do you think?

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