For a moment today, a brief respite from the unending focus on Deep Politics.
The much-anticipated solar eclipse of August 21, 2017 has come and gone. Unusual in modern history, it plunged a corridor of the United States from coast to coast into near total darkness for several minutes. It was probably the most heralded, viewed, photographed, and studied solar eclipse of all time.
I didn’t set out to take a definitive photo of the eclipse. My vantage point was a part of the country that experienced only 87% coverage of the sun by the moon at the peak of the eclipse. And it would be hopeless to try and compete with experienced professionals who had planned on taking stunning photos and NASA experts who were flying in jets at 50,000 feet to chase the eclipse from west to east.
During the maximum eclipse coverage, I spontaneously pointed a Panasonic Lumix digital camera with its 60X telephoto lens extended to the 35 mm equivalent focal length of 208 mm towards the sun, with the camera set at its minimum aperture f/8 and an exposure of 1/2000th of a second, “exposure bias” compensation -1.7, ISO 100.
The result was a photo with an interesting and unusual perspective. As often happens when photographing the sun with a conventional camera, the sun flared and was distorted by the camera’s optics. But in the lower right corner were two identical images, with different color hues, of the crescent of the sun at the time of 87% coverage. It had the look of an impressionist painting.
So, here, submitted for your enjoyment, are a slightly cropped image (below) and a more tightly cropped image (above) of the great eclipse of 2017.