It's not easy to come up with something new when you visit the same place every year for more than a decade. Over the years Marsel has created the most extensive and most popular night photography portfolio of Namibia on this planet, and two years ago he decided it was time to take it to the next level.
The idea was to create a night photography timelapse video featuring his most popular subjects in this amazing country: the fairytale-like quivertrees and the eery, dead camelthorn trees in Deadvlei - something that had never been done before. But instead of going for static scenes, Marsel decided to add movement to the scenes by using a dolly system.
All scenes were shot during the night with Nikon D3, D3s and D4 cameras. We used small headlights for selectively lighting trees and rocks, and we sometimes used the moon. The brighter the scene, the more moon there was at the time. For the arch scene we timed our shoot exactly with moonset, which involved quite a bit of calculating and planning. But the hardest one of all was probably the mist scene in Deadvlei. Mist in Deadvlei only occurs around five times a year, so we had to keep a close eye on the weather predictions and many attempts were unsuccessful. When we finally got it right, the results far exceeded our expectations and show Deadvlei as no one has ever seen it before.
Each second of video consists of 30 photographs. In total, Marsel shot more than 16,000 images over a period of two years for this project.
The video won First Prize in the 2012 Travel Photographer Of The Year Awards.
Marsel & Daniella
Director: Marsel van Oosten
Editor: Daniella Sibbing
Composer: Simon Wilkinson
Produced by: Squiver
Cameras: Nikon D3, D3s and D4
Lenses: Nikon 14-24/2.8 and 24-70/2.8
Dolly: Stage Zero, Dynamic Perception
This is production footage from my forthcoming debut film, "TimeScapes," a portrait of the American Southwest. This video was filmed and edited at 4K (4096x2304) resolution, four times greater than regular 1080p HD. A 4K DCP file is available upon request. Shot on Red Epic and Canon RAW still cameras.
Thank you to Terrence Malick and Godfrey Reggio for their support and inspiration. Also thanks to Eric Kessler, Curt Morgan, Jim Jannard, Vincent Laforet, Bruce Allen, Phil Plait, Dave Finley, and to Helio Collective for the beautiful title logo. My most sincere and humble respect to Mark Magidson and Ron Fricke.
Thank you to my sponsors Kessler Crane, Adobe, camBLOCK, Vinten, Canon USA, TVLogic, Borrow Lenses, Wooden Camera, and KATA.
Are we alone in this vast universe of energy and matter and chemistry and physics?
What if we're not?
What if others look up at the night sky, at the same stars, but from the opposite side?
What I wanted to do, was to use this pictures to tell a story, reflect on the allure of mystery and share the message of Seti project through the words of Jill Tarter