The Great American Solar Eclipse (2017)

My parents and I travelled from our home in Los Angeles to a small town called Silverton, just outside Salem, Oregon, in the summer of 2017. We came, like thousands of others all across the U.S., to experience a total eclipse of the sun—a phenomenon that can only happen no more than twice a year, anywhere on Earth. It was there, in a large open field amid hundreds of fellow stargazers, that I got to experience just that.

Totality was sublime, transcendental, otherworldly—yet, in those two-or-so minutes of pure divinity, and the slow-burning hours leading up to it, I felt as if I had never been more accepting of my place here on Earth, united to the people around me—even if they were strangers I had never seen before.

I did not have the equipment, or eagerness, to photograph the eclipsing of the sun like many other photographers did that day. Instead, I felt compelled to shoot what tends to fascinate me time and time again: people.

This series documents what it was like, for me, in those hours of exceptional twilight, with the last photograph being of the people who first told me to never stop reaching for the stars: my parents.

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