Mayne Island Super moon on May 5 2012

What a moon! What a Saturday night day night out here on Mayne Island, British Columbia Canada. A crowd of about a dozen people joined me at Seaview Beach in Bennett Bay for the moon rising. It is the first time in my five years of living on the island that I had company join me on a photo shoot. Quite festive really and great to see others out capturing the experience first hand as well.

But let’s begin at the beginning shall we. A long time ago on May 1, 2012 I was out in the evening on Reef Bay – a pleasant evening though there were rain showers in the distance.

It was then that I looked up and saw this amazing moon high in the sky.

I had been seeing things posted here and there about some super moon. So I said to self – what if you made a plan to see if you could do a Mayne Island photo shoot of the super moon? Would that be a good idea? Self answered – but you know very little about night photography. I informed myself that there was no time like the present to start learning and I reminded myself that I always learn best by doing. With a frown and shrug Self agreed.

The next few nights were cloudy and though I went out and managed to capture the light on the shore at low tide.

No moon. So instead I read about photographing the moon. It was recommended to have something large in front of the moon to emphasize its grand size. This might not happen here at Reef Bay, plus I was likely to get house lights in the foreground if I was guessing the right place where the moon would come up. Where should I be then? I though and thought and on the evening of the May 4th I went to Seaview Beach in Bennett Bay.

But thankfully the moon wasn’t rising on this side of the view with those heavy clouds. Thunderclouds rolled through swishing their wet skirts across the sky last evening. The moon was well up in the sky before the sun kissed him goodnight.

So with after taking this shot I knew exactly where I wanted to be for 8:39 pm on May 5, 2012 to watch the super moon rise. I cast one of my best spells for a clear sky though heavy cloud had been predicted. I check the weather first thing Saturday morning. Yes! It was suppose to be mostly clear this evening. I arrive early at 7:30 pm with a book and watch the evening settle in around me. An otter swims by and the small swallows dart across the water. The tide is in and I am ready for the magic to begin. Just before the prescribed time of the moon rise, to my surprise I started to get company. For the first time in my five years living on Mayne Island others joined me to also photograph the moon and to simply watch it rise with rattles, chants and sage given in offering. It was quiet festive really and nice to share the moment with others. But the super moon, I am guessing you are waiting to see the super moon right?

The super moon starting to appear…

Then a cloud takes a taste…

Soon we have a super moon beam…

And so the super moon rose as seen from Mayne Island…

The light turns magically mauve as it the moon gets higher in the sky and beacon lights and boat lights shine dimly in comparison.

And now to conclude with one portrait shot of the moon alone in the night sky…

There you have it folks – the super moon of May 5, 2012 from Mayne Island.


SPROUT: When was the last time you courted the moon?

© 2012 Terrill Welch, All rights reserved.

Liberal usage granted with written permission. See “About” for details.

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From Mayne Island, British Columbia, Canada

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189 thoughts on “Mayne Island Super moon on May 5 2012

  1. Courted the moon….lol… as I awoke in the middle of the night, last night, because of the neighbor’s donkey deciding to visit and bray with great exhuberance, the moonbeam shining in my bedroom window felt like a flashlight drilling into my eyes. I must admit, my reaction was not one of awe or even appreciation as I slammed my eyelids closed and pulled the covers over my ears! I had a much more peaceful time enjoying your photos of the moon today 🙂

    • I know what you mean Sue about that darn moon gazing down with its headlamp all night. As you can imagine we give it full access to our sleeping area with those big windows. Glad the after photos were more enjoyable and did you catch the donkey?

  2. Great story and photos, Terrill. I love that you wrote that you took time to study your camera. Wish you had listed some of what you learned. I still keep saying I’m going to do that and I’ve had this camera for 5 years!

    In response to your query on the last time was we courted the moon. “This week,” is my response.

    I started on Wed. May 2nd when I noticed it in the sky on a Wetlands walk. So, Wed., Thurs and Friday I walked there near sunset. The moon had already risen each of those days by the time. For Super moon, I went to the ocean, when the moon was rising 11 minutes before the setting sun. Aside from the mist along the horizon the sky was cloudless all night and, from my perspective made less interesting photos.

    One of the interesting things that I appreciated from the earlier part of the evening was watching the line of cars leaving. It took 15 minutes to get out, like leaving a stadium.. In this case it was Nature’s stadium of Natural Events.

    Happy moon-ing. Thanks for the post. I passed it on.

  3. “And so the super moon rose as seen from Myne Island”. . . ..THAT is an absolutely spectacular shot Terrill. The blues and the water and the sparkle and the moon are alllllllllllllll so perfect. I am especially happy to see this particular shot because I totally missed the rising of the moon here in North Carolina last night, as a thick cloud cover precluded viewing. Thank you soooooooo much:)!!

  4. Absolutely stunning reflections and photos, Laurie, that bring you right in the middle of the sensory place. They are all stop-dead magnificent but the ones where the light from the moon reflecting on the water ripples are extraordinary. As always you find new ways to give the deepest textures to the color blue. it’s a veritable feast for the eyes.

    • Sam you finally did it. Now I know we are truly blogging family. Do you know what it is you did? In your note above you have called me Laurie. I feel even more like her sister everyday and in every way with these kinds of slips. So much fun. I am glad you enjoyed the moon ride and I am on my way over to see what is posted for your Monday morning diary.

      • I called you Laurie indeed Terrill. And I will soon be called the real Laurie, Terrill!!!


        Congratulations on the spectacular response on this beautiful post and on being ‘freshly pressed.’ This has been a long time coming and it’s so well-deserved. This is truly a call for celebration!!!

        • Yep! That is exactly what is going to happen Sam and thank you for coming back to celebrate with me. I hadn’t been thinking it was a long time as so many bloggers never ever get “Freshly Pressed.” It is just an honour to be acknowledge in such a way and have so many great people drop by and visit.

  5. Pingback: Goodbye First Love, Marigold, Hotel, The Avengers, Bonjour Tristesse and new link policy on Monday Morning Diary (May 8) « Wonders in the Dark

  6. Terrill – Your photographs are beyond stunning! And I’m so glad you shared them because we had fog, Fog, FOG for our viewing pleasure that evening. Huge thanks to you though, I’m getting to enjoy the super moon anyway!

    SPROUT: When was the last time you courted the moon?

    I’m a lunar-minded type of gal and observe both new and full moons.

    • Ah yes of course you would be Laurie… I have become more so the last few years but at most times the moon remains a delightful mystery to me. Who knew it rose almost an hour later each night and from a slightly different spot in the sky?

  7. The supermoon is indeed magical, and your experience of it even more so. Thank you for sharing this once-in-a-lifetime experience through well crafted words and images. I treasure the moments when we were both moon gazing together; though at different physical viewpoints, we were together spiritually!

  8. You’ve been Freshly Pressed, Terrill! Congratulations!! I am so excited for you. Now you can enjoy the “Super Moon” of blogging fame. So glad many others will get to enjoy your wonderful photography and thoughts.

    • Oh Kathy I just came in from turning the garden over thinking I would have a shower before going off to take a movie back and then get some groceries…. what a shock! Thank you so much for celebrating with me as I know you have been here before yourself and know what a special thing it is to get “Freshly Pressed” 🙂

  9. Terrill – I just saw where Kathy said you’d been FRESHLY PRESSED! I went out and checked and whoowhee, you sure are. CONGRATULATIONS! WAY TO GO! WHOOHOO! SNOOPY HAPPY DANCE! This is well deserved!

    • Laurie pinch me HARD quick so that I know I am not dreaming!!!!!! My feet are so far off the ground you could just blow me over in a breeze right now. And I think Kathy found out before I did! 🙂

  10. Lovely and beautifully presented too. Quite sci-fi ‘otherworldish’ look in many of the frames. Thanks so much for sharing these – it was cloudy all thro the weekend here: most disappointing. But your photos beautifully make up for it 😉

  11. Great post and amazing photos! The moon looks spectacular – we had a very cloudy weekend unfortunately and so missed out on the gorgeous super moon, so thanks for sharing your photos! And congrats on being freshly pressed!

  12. Wonderful pictures…the photo “Soon we have a super moon beam” is now this weeks wallpaper image on my cellphone (lol-Thank You), beautiful peacefulness captured so well…nice job. Thank You for the tranquility of the moon experience 🙂

  13. lovely pictures…would like to take your permission if I could use one for my cover pic on FB…with due regards given to you 😀
    …I couldn’t resist sharing this post with my friends though!

  14. I love BC! But I’m in Calgary now and whenever there is something spectacular happening in the sky we seem to have too much cloud coverage! It was no different the night of the super moon. 😦

  15. Thank you! for sharing your images of the Super moon. The pictures are just Super beautiful…and you say you know little about night photography? We’ll, I’m sure the Super Moon is very proud of the work you did. Your pictures have done justice to her beauty.

  16. Gorgeous pics! My in-laws live on Mayne so we get the chance to visit quite often. Maybe I’ll run into you taking pics at this year’s May Day celebration. Thanks for capturing and sharing the super moon!

  17. Hey, congratulations on your Freshly Pressed! We met several moons ago (ha) through Kathy’s blog (Lake Superior Spirit). I’m happy to see some local super moon shots– it looked gorgeous in Victoria, too (though I didn’t take any pics). Enjoy your moment in the spotlight!

  18. Wow, simply beautiful photos! I loved how captured the moon at so many times of the day! My favorite was the one with the reflection of the moon on the water! Congrats on being freshly pressed!

    • Thank you IndigoFletcher – the pleasure is mine to share our island these photographs with so many people. Do you this blog was viewed more times in the past six hours than there are people living Mayne Island? We only have about 1,100 permanent residents 🙂

  19. Wow, these are some awesome pictures. I stood up with my daughter to see the large full moon but from where we live it didn’t look all that spectacular. I also tried taking a picture… even with my 8 mega pix cellphone camera it came out a bit bland…. so jealous…

  20. Love some of your moon photos. We haven’t been to Mayne Island yet. Saltspring, Pender, Galiano islands yes. I’m glad you enjoyed beautiful B.C. We love it too!

    • Oh I not only enjoy B.C. Jean, I live here full-time. Mayne Island is home for me… a good place to be and I am glad you have been to many of the southern Gulf Islands as well. I spent more than seven days on Saturna Island in two different trips late last summer and though more remote I highly recommend it as well.

  21. Like you, I was pleasantly surprised by the festive atmosphere for this “super moon” event. But, unlike you, my shots were woefully inadequate. It was my first time with long “bulb” exposures and trying to capture the moon- which in my shots looks like a giant star! Oh, well. Better luck (for me) next time- whenever that time might be. As for your post, the photos would have been more than enough but your writing really added to the experience. Thank you. And congratulations!

    • You are welcome 8teen39 and thank you! Your kind words are greatly appreciated. It is not easy getting more than a giant star in the sky. One piece of advice that stuck with me is to remember that moon is brighter than we think it is. This seemed to help some when trying to figure out what to do. But conditions will be different each time so my forward going strategy will be to learn a whole lot more about manual settings and understanding the science of taking the image I am trying to capture. Lots of learning to do yet… and this is a big part of the fun – it never ends 🙂

  22. Hi Terrill
    I love your Super Moonbeam! We saw the moon also in Vanderhoof. It just makes me happy, all over the world people were outside looking at the moon.
    Congratulations, you have a beautiful blog.

    • Yes the link did show up in the previous comment Sheila and thank you again. “Freshly Pressed” is when a blog is chosen to be featured on the WordPress Home page. Here is what it said at the top right today when I was notified by the editor that this post had been selected:

      The best of 414,286 bloggers, 774,407 new posts, 1,373,999 comments, & 177,647,483 words posted today on

      As you can imagine with these kinds of numbers not too many bloggers find themselves “Freshly Pressed.” So in the wordpress blogging world this is a huge acknowledgment. And I am deeply honoured to see Creative Potager looking crisp and sharp on WordPress homepage.

      • Wow, Terrill!!! Congrats. I use for all my blogs, so was not familiar with home page. Wish I had known what it was so I would have seen you there also. I’m sure you’ll reach it another time. Will be interesting to see what the next topic is you come up with that generates such a flurry of activity 🙂

        Thanks also for the acknowledgment of my photos on FlickR.

    • It does look like a painting Robin and I have been thinking about if I shall paint something using these photographs as reference. We shall see. Sometimes if I am completely happy with the photographs then I do not proceed with doing a painting. As well, since I am an impressionist style painter, my paintings are very different from my photography.

    • You are most welcome Bluebird Annie – I know I felt this same way during the last eclipse when clouds covered my view and I went in search to see what others had seen. It is one of the great things about sharing these kinds of events from different locations.

  23. Thank you for sharing the progression of the moon! I only saw it when it was the brightest, which was super cool, but I didn’t get to see it in it’s largeness! Beautiful shots!

  24. This post is awesome. I love the moon. In this place, moon looks so big, in my place, I just can see the small one. Actually it is a little bit bigger than normal, but not much

  25. Love these pictures! I thought about trying to take a picture of the moon, but then I went to bed. Maybe when I grow up, I’ll have a memory! lol

  26. Very beautiful photos Terrill! superb! I think I was in deep sleep when super moon appeared. Though I have catch it the night before it turns into super moon :). I look forward for more of your stunning photographs! 🙂

    • Mypersonal911 they look pretty amazing and beautiful to me! I have a Canon EOS 40D camera body and to take these photographs I used my special baby which weighs almost as much as a new born – EF 70-200mm 1:2.8 L II USM lens. For later images in the post that were take on May 5th I used a tripod and cable release for the shutter. The earlier ones were handheld.

  27. Great capture. I made it out to capture the super moon on the kayak on a lake – didn’t take into consideration the fact that it had to rise above the hills and trees. After I had packed up the kayak and headed for home, I found the moon as I was on the way home! Managed to capture a few shots – mostly, I sat in awe as it really was just so beautiful. Thanks for sharing – your shots are gorgeous!

    • Andy it seems so strange that we are only about 26 miles apart and you didn’t get to see the moon. I am guessing it is those darn beautiful mountains that trapped the clouds which were blocking your view. I see a very nice cityscape on you blog though and when I get a moment I shall have to wonder over and take a closer look.

  28. Years ago I found my name listed in a baby name book. This particular one defined my name “Candra” as “the moon”. At the time I thought, how ordinary. And over the years I had not found so great a reason to boast in my name. Today with your post, all that changed. Thank you for sharing the moonlight.

  29. Absolutely beautiful photographs and wonderful blog. Great work here. I also love photography and still have my 1961 Konica, 35 MM SLR camera. Believe it or not, it still takes great photographs. I love the background information you give also. Again, great job.


  30. For some reason I missed this the first time around! I saw some of the Photos on your facebook page and never made it over here! These are awesome!
    I loved the magic, I loved the idea that people came out to witness the Moons rising with pagan chants, smoke and dancing! Talk about magic!

    I courted the moon last month when I was in Vermont! There are a few photos on my facebook page. It has been rainy and overcast here off & on for several days, so no moon.

  31. Thanks to a very rainy day here on Mayne Island, I have found a moment to upload the Super Moon 2012 photographs on Smugmug at!i=1859683180&k=QVj2W2S and they are now available for download and purchase in various formats. Thank you for your patience!

    There is also a new album of photographs from our May Day celebrations on Saturday which an amazing colourful and entertaining event where children grow wings for the day, a queen is crowned with a garland wild flowers, adult cloths are layers of frolicking miss-match and shoes go missing as the community dances together in circles!i=1856449158&k=zLGj9b5 I will be writing more about the celebrations here on Creative Potager either today or tomorrow. But I thought you might like a sneak preview 🙂

  32. Do you actually live on Mayne? I spent my childhood summers on Bennet’s Bay and your photos brought back so many memories- as it seems they were taken from Campbell Bay perhaps?

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