During a solar eclipse, the dark moon is seen to move in front of the solar disk until only a thin crescent is left. At that instant it is worth while noting that all spots of light under a tree resemble crescents, large or small, bright or dim.
M.G.J Minnaert, Light and Color inthe Outdoors
On August 21, 2017, my home in Durham, North Carolina was in the path of a solar eclipse. I was enthused by the opportunity to witness a rare celestial event and was eager to photograph some aspect of the eclipse. After deciding against photographing the eclipse directly, I consulted Minnaert’s book: "Light and Color in the Outdoors". His observation of light resembling crescents was intriguing and offered the potential for capturing distinctive images.
Conditions were ideal for observing eclipse light effects: the sky was clear and deciduous trees offered dappled shade. Initially I had only modest hopes of capturing anything of interest; consequently I was delighted to behold the foretold light and shadow effects. Wielding a camera and a sheet of white foamboard, I dashed around my yard to photograph different shaded areas.
Making the photographs was ostensibly an observational act, yet I was captivated by the aesthetic qualities of what I observed. Indeed, some tree-shaded areas acquired a remarkable visual depth and patches of light appeared to morph into three-dimensional forms.
The images collected in this book reveal the variety of luminous patterns projected through the trees and offer an opportunity to visually engage a fleeting natural spectacle.