Energy Solargraph
Virginia Holland
1st Year, Stamps School of Art & Design




This photo is a solar graph. It is created using a pinhole camera and long exposure. Leaving a camera out on the side of a house for a total of four days facing south, captured this image. This is a representation of the solar cycle. It shows us the rising and setting path the sun created during the days of its exposure. This process is a perfect example of the collaboration of art and science. Demonstrating the beauty in things we might not think about, like the path the sun follows every day.

 My solargraph is made from two Monster cans taped together with photo paper inside. The image is produced by puncturing the can with a pin and allowing light to shine through the hole onto the paper creating the path of the sun. The cans must be facing south to capture the entirety of the sun cycle from rise to set. This process is created using long exposure so I left my can up for 4 days on the side of my house. Once I took it down I opened it in a dark room and scanned it into Photoshop. The scientific aspects of this piece include tracking the sun and using only light to create an image. The placement of the camera depends on the latitude of where one is located. The height of the sun depends on the season in which the camera is placed. The artistic aspects of this piece include where you are going to place the camera, and what you want to include in the foreground. I decided to place my camera very high up, and pointing at my house. The curve of the photograph is created because of the curve in the paper, and the light flares are created when the camera is moved. I wanted to add the drops of light in my piece to resemble a lighting effect or a jellyfish-like appearance. When the piece is scanned in there is a lot to do in Photoshop in order to restore it and bring color into the picture. I experimented a lot with the tone and levels of white to black to achieve a printable and interesting piece.  There was a lot of trial and error involved in the creation of this piece due to the fact that many elements are uncontrollable including when there will be sun, wind, and rain. In the end, however, the final piece came out better then I could have imagined.