My photographer boyfriend, like all amateurs, tried and failed to capture the image and feeling of totality, though he got some good cookie bites (cast orange by the solar filter). The eclipse is just too far away, too contrasty, and too complex. Unless you’re a pro, it will never fill your camera the way it fills your eyes, heart, and memory.
Some advice for others who will try nonetheless: the only effective way (I’m told) is to expose for the corona, overlay a shot of the black disc of the moon, and create a final image of the two. Right, astrophotographers? Please comment and tell me how you do it, if you care to share.
Fred Espenak, aka “Mr. Eclipse”, offered his photo tips through a recent webinar; a recording may still be available online.
You do have access to “the finest collection of images of a total solar eclipse ever assembled”: order a backcopy of the November 1991 issue of Astronomy’s Great Eclipse Photo Contest.
Mexico epilogue: The boyfriend? He was a character but is now a thing of the past. I moved on to experience five more eclipses with a short parade of subsequent husbands, and ventured out on my own as well. It took three years to save for the next adventure: an unforgettable odyssey in Bolivia.
Above: Non-pro photo of the diamond ring
Cookie bites (with visible sunspots)
Pro shots: Local photographer Carrizosa (check it out, he got Buzz Aldrin’s autograph); Totality via Fred Espenak; Diamond ring via Snapfish.