I had the chance to travel to Southern Utah (Kanarraville to be exact) to photograph the Great Solar Eclipse of 2012. It was spectacular, and I had as much enjoyment simply being there as I did photographing and filming the eclipse. It was fascinating watching the quality of light change over the course of the hour, with the light dimming to near-dusk levels at the peak of annularity, only to ease back to full daylight as the moon passed out of the path of the Sun. It was eery and spellbinding, and held tens-of-thousands of onlookers captive for much of that hour.
In the very first moments as the ring developed, we could hear the mob of onlookers begin to shout “It’s starting!”, or “Ring of Fire!”, or otherwise cheering and expressing their awe at the sight. It was, in a way, neat to be connected to all those perfect strangers, all gathered around for the same purpose.
The whole day was inspiring. I half imagined the Sun wanted to inspire us all with its great beauty and power even before the eclipse began. As we drove to our destination, I was able to photograph another rare celestial phenomenon. A stunning sun dog was seen for the first half of our trip, and as you’ll see in the images below, it did not disappoint. (As luck would have it, a few airline contrails appeared in about half of the sundog images, with one passing directly in front of the Sun)
Lastly, please note that all of these images are produced IN-CAMERA, meaning the duplicate Suns, the flares, and the rays are all artifacts that were created the good old fashioned way – without any digital manipulation. I used Adobe Camera Raw to process the RAW images, and of course contrast and color-correction have been applied just like Ansel Adams did back in the good ol’ day’s of silver gelatin. Other than that, these are as pure as you can get. I invite you to enjoy the small collection of images here, or see the slightly larger collection of eclipse images by clicking here. You can also see these on Instagram by following @ronadair. (If you’re not on Instagram, see the Instagramified versions here.
Please feel free to repost to sites like Pinterest, Tumblr, etc. or personal (non-commercial) blogs. Thanks!
Geekness: Nikon D800 + 17-35mm 2.8 (sundog photos) & 70-200 2.8 VRII (eclipse images). As mentioned above, no photoshop trickery is happening in these shots — all effects are in-camera. Color and contrast tweaks have been liberally applied. Unfortunately, sundog images have not been spot-corrected for the D800 dust-spot syndrome which I discovered plagues my camera.