Astrophotographer Spends Two Months Creating This Spectacular Lunar Analemma

Lunar Analemma by Betul Turksoy

Architect Betul Turksoy is an accomplished astrophotographer who used her time and dedication to create an incredible image of a lunar analemma. For those of you who may not be familiar, an analemma shows the position of either the Sun or the Moon from a fixed point over the course of many weeks. The finished diagram looks like a figure eight and is quite hard to accomplish photographically due to the number of images needed.

In fact, the first analemma captured on film wasn't created until 1979. But the difficulty of the process doesn't intimidate Turksoy, who has created several solar and lunar analemmas. To capture the lunar analemma, Turksoy took photos throughout the lunar month, each day taking the picture 50 minutes and 29 seconds later than the previous one. Once blended together, the images show the Moon's wandering path due to the shape of its elliptical orbit.

The consistency and patience required to take all of the images is quite high and can hinder many photographers, but not Turksoy.

“One of the most challenging things when taking photographs is being able to be in that location every day at the shooting time,” she tells My Modern Met. “Combining photos is as important as shooting, and also difficult. It took a very long time—a few weeks—to combine the photos, but it was all worth it when I saw the results.”

The images, which were taken throughout July and August 2022, all come together beautifully, with the figure eight dancing over the city as the Sun sets. For her efforts, Turksoy was also singled out by NASA, which named the shot Astronomy Photo of the Day.

Betul Turksoy spent two months photographing the Moon to create this record of the lunar analemma.

Detail of Lunar Analemma by Betul Turksoy

Detail.

The photo shows the figure-eight shape created over the course of a lunar month.

Detail of Lunar Analemma by Betul Turksoy

Detail.

Betul Turksoy: Website | Instagram | X

My Modern Met granted permission to feature photos by Betul Turksoy.

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Jessica Stewart

Jessica Stewart is a Contributing Writer and Digital Media Specialist for My Modern Met, as well as a curator and art historian. Since 2020, she is also one of the co-hosts of the My Modern Met Top Artist Podcast. She earned her MA in Renaissance Studies from University College London and now lives in Rome, Italy. She cultivated expertise in street art which led to the purchase of her photographic archive by the Treccani Italian Encyclopedia in 2014. When she’s not spending time with her three dogs, she also manages the studio of a successful street artist. In 2013, she authored the book 'Street Art Stories Roma' and most recently contributed to 'Crossroads: A Glimpse Into the Life of Alice Pasquini'. You can follow her adventures online at @romephotoblog.
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