July 22, 2009 Solar Eclipse in Asia

July 22, 2009 Solar Eclipse in Asia

Today there was a much publicized solar eclipse.  Because the moon was at the close part of it’s approach and appears slightly larger than the sun, this was a longer than usual eclipse.  The area of Kyushu (Southern Japan) where I live didn’t get a full eclipse, but we got about 90%.

It was cloudy, but the clouds broke up until past midway through the eclipse giving me plenty of time to enjoy it and take photos.  The clouds actually augmented my photos.  I used a piece of 120 Neopan 400 film fully exposed to light in the room, then developed so that it turned black as a viewing filter for observing the eclipse.  The silver of B&W film blocks the harmful UV rays.  BE AWARE HOWEVER that cromagenic B&W film (the kind that the local mini-lab can process in their color developer system) won’t protect you if you tried to use it to look at the sun!

The eclipse began at around 9:40am.  These two photos were taken though my home-made filter.

The sun was an extremely clean, sharp, crescent when photographed without any filters.  I used spot metering with manual adjustments and a very high shutter speed and aperture to take these photos.

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