At Bangka Island, an island located at mid south east of Sumatra Island – Indonesia, 18 August 2012 – 11.40 local time, the sky was bright and clear, a rare phenomenon occurred. It was a sun’s halo, a rainbow-like ring around the sun, the ring was so big that you need to move your head to see its full ring..

The phenomenon surprised many local people, made them stopped their vehicles and captured the sight by their mobile phone or cameras.. many of them couldn’t capture its full ring because its radius/diameter was so big..

Apparently the ring was created from interaction between the light and water crystal in the sky.. Point your thumb to the sun and open your index finger 22 degree relative to thumb, theoretically it’s the diameter of the ring..

Impression :
It was so huge, bright, and colorful.. Never in my life I watched that phenomenon in front of my own eyes directly.. Simply breathtaking ! My uncle who is aged more than half of a century said it was his first experience to watch it directly..  The ring was so huge and colorful, although it was a natural phenomenon, surely it had a magical feeling in it.. as if the entire island was covered by huge ring above..  I don’t know whether I can see it again for the second time.. the trip this time left an unforgettable memory..

How To Create The Photo :
I was accidentally there too and trying to capture the phenomenon by my camera. I immediately set my lens to 18mm (at 1.5x cropped sensor), and pointed it to the sky. To my astonishment, 18mm (correspond to around 75 degrees field of view in my camera) couldn’t capture its full ring beautifully.. :O 18mm / 75 degree FOV was sufficient to capture the ring up to its border, but it was too tight and leave no space at up and bottom of viewfinder.. As I noticed this, I changed my normal lens immediately with wide angle lens (10-20mm) and finally able to capture it with enough space at up and bottom.. Since it’s the sun, lowest ISO and fast shutter speed can be attained, giving excellent image quality without tripod..  hehehe..

Since I was away from city and proper internet connection at that time, I waited departure from Bangka Island and back to big cities to share the photo.. Quite a holiday, quite a memorable experience.. I know this natural phenomenon often occur at many places all over the world, but it’s still unpredictable when and where..  you still have to try your luck to get first experience of it and if you do get it, believe me, it’s felt magical..

*moral of the story –> bring your camera and lenses anytime.. you wouldn’t know when miracles will happen.. when you’re ready and it happens, then you’re on the right time and at the right place..

– Handoko luo, Aug 2012