Archive for June, 2021

Photographing the Boston Eclipse. The Challenges.

This morning’s new moon, called the “Strawberry Moon,” passed between¬†the Earth¬†and sun shortly before sunrise, and moved fully away at 6:32 am. The eclipse began at 4:38 am, 29 minutes before sunrise, as the moon passed in front of the sun, blocking much of the sunlight.

There were many challenges involved in photographing this. The first challenge was to find a decent foreground that would align with the event. I chose Marblehead’s Hammond Park, as I would be able to align the eclipse with Marblehead Lighthouse. The weather was also a significant problem as the sunrise was not viewable, through clouds, until several minutes after the sun fell out of alignment with the lighthouse, hence no real good foreground to tell the viewer where I was. Once the sun and moon’s positions were starting to become visually clear, the difference in exposure from the top (sun & moon) of the photo to the bottom (the full harbor view) made it impossible for me to get both the Marblehead harbor landscape with a defined view of the event. The clouds turned to a thin layer several minutes after sunrise, thus making a decent photo without the usual necessary eye-safe filter one needs for protection during these eclipses. However, once the sun rose a bit more, and then clouds faded more, I needed to use a homemade filter that I created out of a very thick, dark solar filter sheet. I used an unfiltered 100-400mm lens, and a filtered 800mm lens, seen below. Once filtered, the color shift is another challenge, because much of the photo will go semi-dark except for the extremely bright sun.
NBC10Boston photos by Mark Garfinkel

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