The Annular Eclipse of 2023 » Michael Clark Images

In early September this 12 months, Jeff Provenzano contacted me about doing a undertaking in tandem with the annular eclipse, which was happening on October 14, 2023. Jeff is likely one of the world’s most elite sky divers and likewise a member of the Purple Bull Air Drive–a group of elite sky divers, BASE jumpers, and wingsuit pilots. This wasn’t a Purple Bull project, however having labored with Jeff on dozens of assignments during the last fifteen years, I knew it will be a great alternative to create some unbelievable photos. In our discussions, Jeff had lined up helicopters in numerous locations alongside the trail of the eclipse however we couldn’t get permits. We additionally mentioned how we might really pull it off. I informed him I might give it some thought however within the ensuing days I by no means discovered a approach to do all of it in digital camera in a single shot. In actuality, getting this kind of picture with a shifting topic within the sky in opposition to an eclipse is actually an unimaginable shot. With a 16-stop photo voltaic filter on the lens, which is a filter that completely blacks out the body, I might not be capable to see the place he was and even try and deal with him. Therefore, the one answer was a double publicity—both in digital camera or after the actual fact in Photoshop. Each choices yield basically the identical end result.

The entire sky diving photos you see right here on this weblog publish are Double Publicity photos created utilizing photos captured of the Annular Eclipse on October 14th and pictures of Jeff Provenzano that had been captured earlier this 12 months whereas taking pictures an project for Purple Bull. As a result of we couldn’t get any permits for places in step with the eclipse, I made a decision I might simply {photograph} the eclipse from my dwelling right here in Santa Fe, New Mexico–which was in step with the eclipse. Afterwards I might see if this double publicity thought might work.

I photographed the eclipse with the intention of making one thing atmospheric for the double publicity photos. Having photographed a couple of eclipses, I knew the usual shot with pitch black sky and the crescent sun-moon was probably not going to work. I deliberately overexposed the pictures, which created purple and blue halos across the fuzzy eclipse. The eclipse appears fuzzy and out of focus however that’s simply the extreme mild scattering by means of the 800mm lens that I used to be utilizing to {photograph} the occasion. I used to be in a position to regulate and recompose the halos by shifting the lens. The halos are basically reflections bouncing round inside the large telephoto lens I used to {photograph} the eclipse. Right here in Santa Fe, New Mexico we didn’t get the whole eclipse completely centered, however that didn’t actually matter since I felt the crescent form would possibly really lend itself higher for the ultimate double publicity picture. Curiously in one among these photos if you happen to look carefully you’ll be able to see a pretty big photo voltaic flare flying off the solar’s floor on the sting of the eclipse. See the final picture under for a detailed up of that photo voltaic flare.

Whereas photographing the eclipse, I saved shifting the digital camera to maneuver the halos across the body–and likewise so I might have a number of choices once I got here again into the workplace and began placing the pictures collectively. I selected the pictures of the eclipse that I believed would possibly work properly after which pulled the skydiving photos and overlayed them in Photoshop utilizing a easy mix mode, which is just about the identical as doing the double publicity in digital camera. I nearly fell out of my workplace chair when the primary picture got here collectively. I used to be blown away at how good it seemed and properly it labored. I used to be so impressed by that first picture that I began placing collectively a bunch of various photos to see how they labored out. A couple of hours later I had over 30 composite photos labored up and commenced taking a look at them as a complete to determine which of them work the very best.

In my pleasure I zipped off a couple of low res jpegs to Jeff, who was on the time sky diving in southern Arizona at a soar zone. In between sky dives, he responded and was simply as blown away as I used to be. I posted a couple of to Instagram and my feed blew up with feedback. Jeff did the identical and he bought much more feedback and likes–particularly since he’s fairly well-known within the sky diving world. A few of Jeff’s mates had been questioning how he jumped in entrance of the eclipse once they didn’t see it in southern Arizona, therefore the lengthy clarification of those photos right here and on my social media posts.

I’ve been requested to do that type of shot a number of instances by a couple of totally different purchasers. A kind of instances the consumer knew the percentages of capturing the precise picture was so tough they wrote into the contract that I might nonetheless receives a commission even when I got here again with zero photos–fortunately that project fell by means of as they couldn’t get permits for what we needed to attempt. My response has all the time been that for topics in movement the one actual approach to do it’s a double publicity. Now I can say that it really works. I’ve much more enjoying round to do with numerous photos mixed with the eclipse however under are a couple of of my favorites that I’ve put collectively thus far.

I’ve since put up a gallery on my web site with the very best photos from this undertaking. Test these out here. I’m fairly excited for the subsequent massive eclipse to check out this method and to do every little thing in digital camera–keep tuned for that.