Photographing the 2024 Total Solar Eclipse (results)

The path of totality for the 2017 Total Solar Eclipse ran right through my backyard, and it was my first experience photographing totality. Total solar eclipses, when the moon completely covers the sun, are rare. After this year's eclipse, the lower 48 United States will see a brief bit of totality up around Montana in 2044, and a major event across the US in 2045—and I'll be near retirement!

2024 Total Solar Eclipse composite photo by Jeff Geerling
See the full-size image of the eclipse composite on Flickr.

The above photograph is a composite image of all the stages of the 2024 eclipse. I took the pictures in the midst of a few thousand people scattered Fruitland, Missouri, during the April 8, 2024 Total Solar Eclipse.

Photographing the 2024 Total Solar Eclipse

On April 8, there will be a Total Solar Eclipse covering an large swath of the US, offering hundreds of millions of people the opportunity to witness one of the most spectacular displays of our sun.

Jeff Geerling Photographing the Total Solar Eclipse

I wrote two blog posts about the recent 2017 eclipse, as well—check those out:

For this year, I was considering going all-in on a custom Raspberry-Pi-based solar tracking system, recording video and images... but Will Whang already built a custom solar imaging setup that would put anything I build to shame.

Photographing the 2017 Total Solar Eclipse

Last year, when I first learned that my house was in the path of totality for this year's eclipse, I immediately logged into BorrowLenses and rented a Nikon 200-500mm f/5.6 VR lens (for photography—it's now on my wishlist) and then purchased a set of eclipse glasses for my family, and materials to build a solar filter for the lens.

I've learned from Reddit's DIY community that people like the end result first... then an explanation, so:

2017 Total Solar Eclipse composite by Jeff Geerling
See the full-size image of the Eclipse composite on Flickr.

A Full Eclipse of the Moon!

Tonight many of the Seminarians watched the moon turn red as it was eclipsed by the earth. Supposedly, the rays from the sun on the outer parts of the globe are bent by the atmosphere towards the moon, lighting it with red wavelengths. I took a few pictures of the event, and I thought I'd share some observations on photographing the moon, especially in these special circumstances...

First, a picture of the setup I was using:

D40 with 70-300mm VR II lens  

It's a Nikon D40 with a 70-300mm VR lens attached, along with a hood to block out stray light from the area (I was taking pictures outside, with the seminary's bright exterior lights shining everywhere). It's all mounted on a Bogen tripod and ball head.

Here's the first shot I took of the moon: