I'd been randomly looking through my old stock photos from many moons ago when I stumbled upon a picture I had taken of a windmill in Warwickshire that I had discovered whilst driving around with a friend. The windmill in question was Chesterton Windmill - built in 1632 with theories that it may have also been used as a makeshift observatory by the owner - more on the history here: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chesterton_Windmill

Continuing my adventures in online searches, I then came across Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, an American poet who'd penned 'The Windmill'. I wanted to test my fairly new emotimo TB3 out in cold weather, for power consumption rather than temperature capabilities so I headed out on a three night / three day adventure in Warwickshire to create some sort of American / English collaboration kit test!

The shoot:

The nights were cold, very cold. The temperature only dropped to -2C but they don't place traditional windmills in sheltered places. The wind was horrific and felt more like -10. I'm used to working in the extremes and I was suitably dressed but taking your gloves off to do anything is painful. With the only place to hide being the subject I was shooting, I had to stick it out but my trusty flask of coffee got me through the 12hr nights!

Each shot took roughly 4hrs, some longer. My main struggle was light pollution - Chesterton is what you might call 'in the middle of nowhere' as far as neighbouring towns are concerned but a distant low-level cloud formation surrounding the area was still managing to reflect light from the nearby motorway and the distant towns and cities. It didn't help that two roads run alongside the field I was shooting in hence why you may see the occasional flash in the shots - that'll be the passing cars.

I very often get asked if I find timelapse boring. I can see why because technically, once you've pressed 'go' on the camera you've got a four hour wait just to get one shot. There are a few reasons why 'no is my answer':

1) I get to travel the world and see amazing sights for a living - sitting in an office staring at the same walls for 8hrs a day to me, is boring.

2) I use the time to catch up on emails, develop new rigs, think about life, read, watch films and phone the people I love.

3) I've seen more sunrises and sunsets than I can even keep track of and each one is very different - I'll never get bored of that!

4) It's my passion, my love and it never feels like work; I've basically found a way to get paid for my hobby.

As a camera test, the emotimo / dynamic perception combination worked out well on battery consumption - much better than expected given the climate. I'd previously taken it out to Ethiopia on a shoot and it fared well there as well (+45C and the finest dust I'd ever inhaled).


Filming by my good self, obviously - chadchud.co.uk

Voice - Andrew Charles-Hilton

Music - 'State' Moby - mobygratis.com

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And here's the original poem:

Behold! a giant am I!
Aloft here in my tower,
With my granite jaws I devour
The maize, and the wheat, and the rye,
And grind them into flour.

I look down over the farms;
In the fields of grain I see
The harvest that is to be,
And I fling to the air my arms,
For I know it is all for me.

I hear the sound of flails
Far off, from the threshing-floors
In barns, with their open doors,
And the wind, the wind in my sails,
Louder and louder roars.

I stand here in my place,
With my foot on the rock below,
And whichever way it may blow,
I meet it face to face,
As a brave man meets his foe.

And while we wrestle and strive,
My master, the miller, stands
And feeds me with his hands;
For he knows who makes him thrive,
Who makes him lord of lands.

On Sundays I take my rest;
Church-going bells begin
Their low, melodious din;
I cross my arms on my breast,
And all is peace within.

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

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