This was the first time ever I saw a solar eclipse in nature. Okay, it was ‘only’ an annular eclipse, but it was beautiful and a great experience. Around us was a big crowd and when the moon moved over the sun and only a circle of light (aka fire ring) was visible, everyone burst into cheers. I love my pictures, but that’s nothing compared to the experience of seeing it with your own eyes. If you ever get a chance to see one, take it, run for it, you don’t want to miss it! And yes, please use proper eye protection – sun glasses are not sufficient!
To be close to the center of the eclipse path, we drove all the way up to Redding. NASA provides a lot of information about upcoming solar eclipses and even an interactive page with detailed information on this past eclipse.
Looking at the fire ring at its peak confirms that we were almost at the center.
Since we spent the entire afternoon in the hot sun waiting for the eclipse to happen, I took more than just one picture. Here is a composite over the entire eclipse. That’s a first result of about 2 hours of image taking. As you can see towards the end (lower right corner), we got some clouds.
Here is a second composite covering just a few minutes:
Wanna see an eclipse for yourself? Following NASA webpage provides all the dates for this decade: http://eclipse.gsfc.nasa.gov/SEdecade/SEdecade2011.html.
- I used a solar filter from thousandoaksoptical.com/solar.html to protect the camera’s sensor and my eye when looking through the viewfinder.
- There is a great night photography meetup group here in the SF Bay Area where a lot of people share their knowledge (www.meetup.com/NightPhotography).
- Last and not least, there is Steven Christenson’s Star Circle Academy blog (blog.starcircleacademy.com/2012/04/solar-filter/)
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