Solargraphy – also called solarigraphy – is a niche form of pinhole photography that stretches single exposure images to an extreme exposure length. Relying on homemade cameras, darkroom paper, and a small pinhole instead of a glass lens, solargraphs allow an image to be captured over months or years. The path of the sun and the landscape appear directly on the surface of the paper.
Christian Fiedler, a photographer in New Jersey, discovered solargraphy during the covid pandemic lockdown. He developed “Beacons Through Time,” a solargraph pinhole photography project that has focused on east coast lighthouses. As Christian has stated, regarding what drew him to the project, “With the sun orbiting in grand arcs over the horizon month after month, these beacons through time have endured centuries of quiet and distinguished service.”
This summer, for the first time ever, the U.S. Lighthouse Society held a dance contest centered around National Lighthouse Day on August 7. Entries came in from ten different states. The first prize winner was shot at Yaquina Head Lighthouse in Oregon and was produced by Sabrina Gorney, who is interviewed in this podcast episode.
Jeremy D’Entremont is the author of more than 20 books and hundreds of articles on lighthouses and maritime history. He is the president and historian for the American Lighthouse Foundation and founder of Friends of Portsmouth Harbor Lighthouses, and he has lectured and narrated cruises throughout the Northeast and in other regions. He is also the producer and host of the U.S. Lighthouse Society podcast, “Light Hearted.” He can be emailed at Jeremy@uslhs.org