When the sun goes behind the moon

My first post in more than 7 months and a lot has changed in the world. The camera has hardly been used but there was a lovely opportunity a couple of weeks ago with the Annular Solar Eclipse that we witnessed from here in India.

It was an overcast day and I knew right away that I wasn’t going to get clear pictures. However, I was hoping for some clearing in the cloud cover and that I would manage to catch glimpses.

The big challenge was how I would go about shooting it though. Even a partially obscured sun isn’t something that one should attempt to see through the viewfinder. Thankfully I had a Kenko  ND3-ND400 Variable Neutral Density filter in my gear and one that fitted on my 300f4FL lens.  So, that’s the gear that I decided to use.

The eclipse maxima was just after mid-day when the sun was high in the sky and I didn’t really have much else that I could get in the frame from my balcony. So it was just going to be a shot of the eclipsed sun through clouds.

Setting the Variable ND filter to its maximum and with a big under-exposure dialled in, I shot off a few shots. The result was quite pleasing – surreal for sure. As a friend commented when I posted it on a WhatsApp group, “Looks like a scene straight from Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. I wouldn’t be surprised to see Lord Voldemort come through the clouds any moment.”

I shot quite a few shots all the way through the maximum eclipse but the one that really pleased me was when a few doves decided to fly past the frame and I managed to catch one of them in the frame. Felt quite happy with this one.


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