Drawing The Eclipse

An afternoon when people of all races and ages gathered

Today I drew the eclipse in NY City, and while not a totality zone (love that phrase, which means a place where you can experience a full eclipse. NYC was about 75%), it didn’t matter to me. I was happy to be able to cover and draw the city I love so much, to draw New Yorkers as they gathered to gaze skyward. I was stationed at the American Museum of Natural History, where they held an “event” on their Hayden Planetarium terrace (a homecoming of sorts for me: my first job in NYC was in the art department of the museum).

People were in a friendly, excited, chatty mood. I spent most of the time watching people, although I did put on my eclipse glasses three times to view the sun/moon; frankly I found the people more interesting. But the mood was unique: there were oos and aahs, and clapping at times. As I watched and drew the gathered group around me, what I felt was comaraderie, a relief to be spending time together doing something that was not about politics or feeling divided as a country. Perhaps that’s my spin. But nonetheless, it was wonderful to see such a diversity of people come out to watch the eclipse — the very young and the very old, and many, many different races.

A girl and her eclipse box

And while I was drawing, a reporter, Carmen Graciela Diaz, asked to film me drawing, and here is the video.


Visual journalist/writer for New Yorker, New York Times, CBS News, CNN. TED, SXSW speaker. Looking to change world w humor. lizadonnelly.com