Pictures of the Sun

34-Week Solargraph

Since everyone else this week is sharing their photos of the total solar eclipse (which I was not able to go see in person), I’ll share a different kind of view of the sun. This image documents 34 weeks of setting suns, from 23 September 2016 to 18 May 2017, as seen from the stump of a wooden pole near Virginia Lakes Road in Mono County, looking toward Mount Olsen.

Pinhole camera

The camera in September, at the start of the exposure.

The image was made with a pinhole camera, made from a bright red holiday cookie tin, wrapped in brown paper (for a bit of camouflage, which turned out to be temporary), taped onto a thin board, which was screwed onto the post. It endured one of the longest and wettest winters on record, at 8,650 feet on the east side of the Sierra Nevada. The exposure is made on wet-darkroom photo printing paper, but the paper is not developed — the faint but visible image is scanned and adjusted in Photoshop. These images are called Solargraphs (some in Europe prefer Solarigraphias).

Pinhole camera

The camera in May, after 34 weeks.

Well, okay, here’s my photo of the partial eclipse in central California (21 August 2017), using a colander as a projection device … a sort of pinhole camera obscura.

Eclipse 2017


Copyright © 2017 Tim Messick. All rights reserved.
See also Tim Messick Photography and the Bodie Hills Plants blog.

About Tim Messick

Photographer, cartographer, and botanist/naturalist. Home is in Davis, California. Home-away-from-home is the eastern Sierra Nevada. Compiling a flora of the Bodie Hills.
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