Photographer Shoots Double Exposure Eclipse Photos on 35mm Film

A composite image featuring a cityscape with a prominent arch and dome on the left, and a woman in a green outfit lounging inside a spherical, futuristic chair on the right.

After shooting the recent total eclipse on 35mm film, analog photographer Sven White decided that instead of just developing them and having photos that look “like all the others” he would double expose the film instead.

St. Louis-based White had shot 72 photos of the eclipse using a roll of Cinestill 50D and a roll of Cinestill 400D inside his Canon EOS 3 SLR camera. He borrowed his friend’s Canon EF 800mm 5.6 L and a MrStarGuy solar filter to get a nice photo of the celestial phenomenon.

A soccer player strikes the ball during a corner kick in a packed stadium, showcasing a sunny day with a clear sky and the audience in vibrant red attire.
Shot on Cinestill 50D in CityPark, the home of St. Louis City SC.
Large outdoor sculpture of a human eye with detailed blue iris and white sclera, accented by a small crescent shape, set against a backdrop of green trees.
Shot on Cinestill 400D.

After shooting the photos, White had a long drive home and plenty of time to think about the images he had just shot.

“I knew everyone and their brother would have already been inundated with eclipse photos by the time I got the film developed. And, if any of my photos did turn out decent, they’d be just like all the others, except on 35mm film,” he says.

White tells PetaPixel that his inspiration to double expose the roll came from a digital composition he made of 2017’s eclipse that used the Gateway Arch in St. Louis; the world’s tallest arch and Missouri’s tallest structure.

When shooting the second set of exposures, White used a Canon 50mm f/1.4 lens and took it with him to a studio fashion shoot and an MLS game. He also went back to Gateway Arch.

A woman with red hair sits thoughtfully on a black leather ottoman, wearing a yellow top, fishnet tights, and black boots, with a soft light orb effect near her face.
Model Gracey Lynn

A large ferris wheel with numerous enclosed capsules stands against a clear blue sky, its central hub illuminated by a crescent moon-like light installation.

The gateway arch towers in the background with the old courthouse dome visible under it, framed by lush greenery and a bright blue sky. a statue stands prominently in the foreground.

A large mural of two glaring eyes painted on an orange shipping container, with a neon pink crescent shape in front, set against a clear blue sky.

A solar eclipse visible through the gateway arch in st. louis, showing a crescent sun aligned symmetrically under the illuminated arch at night.

“It worked out about as well as I could hope,” he says. White normally shoots on Nikon so he says if could do over he would “rent or borrow a Nikon super telephoto for my F5 and mark the film in order to line up the frames better.”

This would have allowed him to “pay more attention to centering and otherwise positioning the eclipse for optimal double exposure composition.”

But most importantly, White says he had fun shooting the eclipse on the fly and is happy that he “ended up with a handful of images I think are interesting.”

A ferris wheel captured in a long exposure at night, displaying a vibrant spectrum of swirling red, green, and blue lights against a dark sky.

Three soccer players in action during a match; one in a maroon jersey from the home team and two in green away jerseys, with tension evident on their faces.

Film strip showing a repeated pattern negative image of a vehicle, displayed in a reddish hue against document background.
A negative of one of the totality frames.

More of White’s work can be found opn Facebook, Instagram, and website.

Image credits: Photographs by Sven White