The Great Eclipse

Posted at 10:58 AM, Aug 16, 2017
and last updated 2017-08-16 11:08:28-04

Millions of people will be watching the 2017 total solar eclipse, which will cross the continental U.S. on Aug.21. The total solar eclipse is going to be phenomenal to capture in photos, but it is also going to be a difficult undertaking.

Only 14 states from the Pacific Northwest to the Southeast will have complete darkness, so the path of totality will not cover the entire United States.  

The swath of the shadow will touch the United States for only 1h 33m 16.8s but the length of time to capture that iconic photo is remarkably short – 2 minutes 40 seconds or less.

With that said, here are a few tips to prepare you for the big event!

Preparation is key: If you plan on having new equipment or gear, ship them to your location. Speaking of gear, make sure you have filters that protect the camera sensor, a cable or remote shutter release, so you don't bump the camera while shooting and have a dependable tripod. Also, make sure you leave a few days early and look for an area without light pollution.

Know where you want to be: Figure out and know where to put your tripod. There are tracking apps online such as the mapping and sun/moon app. It can help fine-tune your tripod position which will allow you to anticipate the light's movement and lock in your composition ahead of time.

Protect your eyes: It is a necessity that you protect your eyes and camera with solar filters. That means eclipse glasses for you and professional, treated glass filters for your camera.

Take photos but take breaks: If you are in the path of totality, remove your glasses and camera filters to see the sun’s corona, and remember to take a break. Get your shots, but be sure to take in the scene with your own, unfiltered eyes.

Remember, You must use solar viewing glasses and camera filters throughout the partial solar eclipse, which will last several hours, depending on where you live and, of course, the weather will play a big part in whether you get that once in a lifetime type of image!