A Cosmopolitan Cosmology

This is a collaborative arts project based on Sherkin Island, West Cork, Ireland.
From June 21 2009 - December 21 2009 we used pinhole cameras to record solargraph images on the islands of Roaring Water Bay and its environs. Cameras were distributed among the Sherkin Diaspora reaching far and wide. This blog documents the process and solargraphs created. For current work please see my website

some solargraphs

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Ball is rolling

Thanks Roseanne I spent the evening parceling up can cameras to be ready for posting, so I am glad to get an address to which I can send them. Good Luck in your exams. BTW I have one of Brenda's cameras and will drop it in to the Gate.


Heool Sheelagh, Roseanne here. My first address for a camera is

Mr. Thomas Dodd,

Many thanks

Workshop May 23

We worked hard last weekend. As one pinholer put it - 'it was hard graft'. We weather proofed 65 coffee can cameras, loaded them with photographic paper in a makeshift darkroom, agreed a set of instructions for positioning cameras and had a mini-tutorial on how to load text and images onto the blog. That is a lot for one afternoon.

I think we need a bit of a break now and will not be doing any work next weekend.

In the meantime I will be wrapping cans to be ready for posting. We need to send them soon, so I will be collecting addresses from here on in.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

From my Roof II

Another shot taken from the roof of my home, this time using a coffee can instead of a film can and Ilford paper instead of the Kodak paper used in the other two.
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From my Roof

solargraph 1, originally uploaded by Mic Stephens.

Taken from my home facing south. A two month exposure.


solargraph 3, originally uploaded by Mic Stephens.

Earlier solargraph taken by strapping camera facing upwards into the branches of a tree. No sun streaks but interesting nonetheless.

Pinhole Camera Site

Hi there
I placed a pinhole camera last December in my garden facing west over the sea (Roaring Water Bay) and an inland bay. I am looking forward to seeing the results next month when I take it down on June 21st. This should be an image with lots of interest as there are two bodies of water and a slim strip of land in the shot and I hope there will be some sun reflection in the water.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

We are not alone

We are not alone in our curiosity about solargraphs. I came across this website which documents a solargraphy project in the UK. I like the interface and am wondering if we should migrate from blogger. Below I have embedded an album from the website. What do you think?


Camera Locations

I got a text today from OG, she suggested that the Port of Cork would make an ideal location for siting some cameras. I think it is a great location - it has many of the characteristics we were looking for - an industrial setting with defined skyline contrast. Harry Moore has already done pinhole photos of the Port of Cork www.harrymoore.net. Now any ideas of how we can get the cameras into position?

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Workshop May 16

Steam was rising off the house yesterday as we beavered away making pinhole cameras. We had some old hands and some new hands to the process, and some much improved techniques thanks to the QA of MS. I haven't counted all the cameras yet, but we must have close on 100. OG is taking the first ones to Killarney and we will start mailing out cameras from next weekend.

How to position your solargraph camera

Thanks for taking a camera. The camera is a sealed unit containing light sensitive paper; please do not open it as that will prematurely expose the paper. The following are a few tips to bear in mind when setting your camera in position.

The camera will record the track of the sun, so pointing it East or West will record sunrises and sunsets. If you point it due South, you will need to tilt slightly in order to capture the full height of the sun. The pinhole will be identified by an arrow on the tin. Ensure that the pinhole is facing in the direction of the scene that you want to record.

The camera needs to be held in a constant position. Attach the camera to any stable fixture, so that neither the camera nor the fixture can move. Electrical tape or silage tape is ideal for this purpose.

On June 21 (or as near as) completely remove the strip of tape identified by the red electrical tape tag to begin the exposure. Once the camera is fixed and the tape is removed, you can leave it untouched until the end of the exposure period on December 21st 2009. At the end of this time, before removing the camera from its fixed position, cover the pinhole with some opaque tape (black electrical tape will do) and return it to us by post; to Lios na Si, Church Strand, Baltimore, Co.Cork, Ireland (this address can be found on the blog).

Please take a photo of the camera in situ and a photo of the facing landscape. You can upload these images to the blog by sending an email with images attached to this email address. Let us know which camera you have by the unique number stuck to the body so that way we can compare it with the final solargraph. We would love to know where the camera is. You can find the latitude and longitude at this website, or else just give us the address. We would also love to know a little about you, what is your link to Sherkin?

Thanks for being part of our Cosmopolitan Cosmology

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Workshop May 10 2009

The core group met in Sherkin to plan implementation of the project today. It was a good meeting and we have some new participants who are very welcome.

During the afternoon we revisited some of the research that has taken place in the previous phase of Artist in the Community project Sept 08 - Jan 09 and looked at the work of other artists and art projects.

Some of the screens in the presentation are blank as references were emebedded in sheelaghnagig blog

We did some of our talking in the hall and then decamped outside for the rest of the afternoon.

We are meeting again next Saturday to start making cameras and it should be fun. if you want to get involved bring a drill and a sense of humour.