1. This fourth film is the last in a series of construction time-lapse narratives produced exclusively for The Huntington in San Marino, CA. As they expanded the Chinese Garden for visitors to enjoy and marvel at, I decided this film would be an experiment in tone, color and softness. Called Lingering Clouds Peak and recorded I shot this film over a five month period. As part of the construction process they invented the way they installed and secured the heavy stones placed inside the top of the waterfall. When you walk under it and look up, you're glad they were successful!

    # vimeo.com/150922019 Uploaded 123 Plays 0 Comments
  2. Commissioned in August of 2013 by The Huntington Library and Botanical Gardens to document their new construction in the Chinese Garden, I set about the task with nine cameras, four motion control devices, extra batteries and a boatload of effort...

    At over 200,000 images, I have plenty of material to work with...yikes! This is the second in a series of four short time lapse narratives. Here's the first one: buildabetterphotograph.com/time-lapse-narratives/walkway/

    The subject of this page is my most ambitious attempt to date: I took an After Effects class to learn more of what I need to learn and master. Also during this process I came to a humbling and profound understanding of editing in general and sound editing and design in particular...it was a bear to cut the movement and sound together. Next time I hope to have a budget allocation for hiring a composer.

    Stay tuned for number three: "The Pavilion"

    My Gear:
    5D MRKII
    T3i (2)
    GoPro Hero 2 (2)
    Syrp Genie for panning
    eMotimo TB3 for panning, tilting and sliding
    Dynamic Perception Stage 0 Dolly (6 foot rail)
    Lil Mule for longer dolly shots
    Canon glass: 16-35, 24-105, 100-400, 24 tilt-shift (although all tilt-shift work done in post)
    Sigma glass: 10-20 (2)

    Lightroom 5
    Adobe Premiere CC
    Adobe After Effects CC
    Adobe Media encoder CC
    Quicktime 7

    Videoblocks for some sound effects (I record some wild sound during production)
    Pond5 for the music track

    # vimeo.com/95779910 Uploaded 365 Plays 2 Comments
  3. I was hired in mid-2011 to document the construction and landscaping of a multi-million dollar renovation of the Japanese Garden located at The Huntington Botanical Gardens in San Marino, CA. As part of the process the first tea house built in the US after WWII (and erected at the Buddhist temple in Altadena) was disassembled and sent to Japan for examination and repair/replacement of original materials.

    It was sent back and re-erected on it's new site at The Huntington. That is the first time lapse. Chapter Two: The Landscape Process is about the second half of the process when the landscaping and finishing touches were performed.

    I shot all content, performed all editing, sourced all music and sound effects. The client gave me carte blanch to do what I felt was necessary to tell their story.

    # vimeo.com/66348606 Uploaded 210 Plays 2 Comments
  4. From September 2011 through mid-January 2012, a single camera documented an extensive exterior restoration undertaken by The Huntington. Experts in many areas of construction, design and fabrication came together and brought back all the luster this gem has to offer.

    # vimeo.com/65927286 Uploaded 171 Plays 0 Comments
  5. This is the fourth time lapse short film I was asked to shoot and produce for The Huntington Botanical Gardens in San Marino, CA. This was a challenging shoot in that the space was crowded, dusty, windy and wet most of the days. My camera and peripheral gear had to be cleaned every night and tested to ensure each day was photographed properly.

    Glad it's over.


    # vimeo.com/65620021 Uploaded 104 Plays 0 Comments

Time-Lapse at The Huntington Botanical Gardens

Michael e. Stern Plus

For many months I have been documenting specific activities as The Huntington prepares for its' centennial celebration in 2012.

For the tea house a total of eight "chapters" will be produced.

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