Arriving in the Victoria West area on our first day of our timelapse trip to the Karoo South Africa, we were anxious to scout some locations to get shooting as soon as possible. It was now evident that there was indeed a heatwave passing through the country...
As soon as we decided where to shoot first, we didn’t waste any time to unpack our equipment. I don’t think we realized just how much gear we had until we started hiking up these rocky hills, solar panel and all! It took several hikes to get everything up to the spot where we wanted to shoot. And once the shooting started, it didn’t stop.
We had two cameras firing away, mostly one on a Shukuma DOLLY and one on a Shukuma MINI. Much planning is required for any timelapse shots, keeping various factors in consideration and this was no different. I always try to set up at least one dolly for nighttime shooting while there is still sufficient light. It can be quite challenging to set up in the dark, especially when working in uneven terrain and with one camera already exposing. And now try to make your way back to camp...
On day four we made our way towards De Aar, almost failing to reach our next stop. There were so many spots next to the road to set up a shot, so we did just that. People were so concerned that they would stop to check if everything was okay. Perhaps they thought we had vehicle problems or perhaps they thought we were just plain crazy for being out in the sun like this!!
The days were hot and nights were windy, often stormy. Irregular cloud activities and sudden wind direction changes sure kept things interesting and unpredictable. It was sometimes difficult to know in which direction a storm was moving so I would take the risk to set up my camera to shoot throughout the night, not knowing if I’ll be forced to stop the shot.
During one night the wind was blowing like crazy and I was concerned about the camera and lens being so close to the ground. When I got out of the tent there was dust everywhere! As I got back to put all the equipment away, I was barley in the tent when the first raindrops started to fall!
We then slowly made our way to the Strydenburg area and came across an abandoned house. On top of that, there was some serious storms brewing all around us. If we had five cameras here they would all be shooting simultaneously in a different direction. The scenes were incredible!!
At one point there was an 18 hour period passing by and my camera didn’t stop shooting for more than 30min.
After seven nights in the Karoo we came back with a total of about 25 minutes of timelapse footage. Trying to compile this into a song which is less than 4 minutes is simply impossible...
SPECIAL THANKS TO:
For helping me carry all the heavy equipment!
For helping me planning shots and setting up.
And for always making me laugh!
Also for documenting the trip via Instagram - instagram.com/jonellelouw
Ever since I was a kid, I have always been mesmerized by extraordinary beauty of my hometown, San Diego. The city has many hidden treasures that have always captivated me, and they continue to do so. I wanted to show the city through my own eyes and artistic vision. I wanted to showcase San Diego from the eyes of somebody who has lived there their entire life. I have been working on this piece for about four months to really harness the details and create a visually striking Timelapse film. I wanted to make something that was unique to my own perspective of filmmaking. I also wanted to create something that I could look back and see all of the places I used to go.
This is my third short-film about the northern lights. This year some epic displays has been on the sky, and for the first time I have included real-time recordings.
As usual, my main focus is on getting the auroras show as close as possible to real-time speed given the time available in a short video. Although in a few sequences I have accepted overdoing the speed to better enhance other elements, such as moving fog, faster pans, clouds, milky way etc.
In the film I have tried to show the slower majestic dancing lights, as well as the more faster, dramatic and abstract shows, and finally the auroras in combination with city lights and urban elements.
The video is shot using stills and assembled together for best possible resolution and dynamic range. In this video however, for the first time, I have also chosen to include some real-time video footage. This is to better show how furiously fast and beautiful the polar spirits can dance! The two sequences which are shot in real-time (in the middle of the video) could never have been recreated using still photos, regardless what camera you are using.
To substantiate the feeling and sense of the different aurora shapes and speeds I did get a special musical soundtrack composed by composer Peter Nanasi. In my opinion the music is just fantastically beautiful and I recommend you watching the video on a large screen as well with proper audio gear connected. Peter is just fantastic talented, and very professional to work with. Thank you Peter for your hard work.
The video has been shot with Canon DSLR’s and various lenses, as well as using rails and time-lapse gear from Dynamic Perception. (Stage One / Stage Zero) dynamicperception.com
Most sequences have been shot in arctic northern Norway, close to the city of Tromsø. One sequence is from Finland and one from Sweden.The city sequences you see are shot in and over Tromsø, which in Norway often is referred to as “the northern lights city”.
BTW! This year the coast of northern Norway was overwhelmed with humpback whales, which are absolutely magnificent and beautiful creatures. While watching the auroras and shooting the opening sequence of this video I could hear the whales breaching and blowing air in the fjord. It was an absolutely magic experience. Sadly the whales never came close enough to do a really good shot of the whales under the auroras, but If you watch closely on the opening sequence you can actually see the whales breaching a few times a bit out in the fjord.
This video will be featuring in full HD on my upcoming Blu-Ray / DVD “The Magic Auroras”, in good company with LOT’S of more videos, soon to be released!!! ;) To ensure you get more information regarding this, please pay attention on my facebook page.
More information about me and my photography work:
Arctic Light Photo / Ole Salomonsen
I hope you like watching the video, and that you find the dance of the polar spirits just as fascinating as I do.
Video is immediately available in 4K+ in various formats/codecs:
4096 x 2304 24p/ 3840x2160 24p/ 1920x1080 24p.
In addition to these sequences I have a large collection of sequences shot with all sky cams (360degrees fisheye) which are suitable for domes, and many more real-time sequences. I am considering putting out something more shot in these formats, at a later time.
Also please have a look at my first two videos here: (currently under re-editing, new versions ready soon) vimeo.com/40555466 - Celestial Lights from (2011/2012) vimeo.com/21419634 - Land of The Northern Lights (2010/2011)
Canon EOS 1D-X
Canon EOS 5D Mark III
Canon EOS 5D Mark II
Canon EF 24mm 1.4 II
Canon EF 14mm 2.8 II
Canon EF 15mm 2.8
Dynamic Perception Stage One / Stage Zero
Jeep Grand Cherokee :)
This timelapse features my best work yet. It represents hours and hours of dedication to the art. I'm driven by chasing fleeting moments of damatic light on beautiful landscapes and also capturing the night sky and milky way in all it's glory is a real buzz. Not be mention curling up out under the stars beside all the gear for whole nights at a time catching some sleep here and there between checking the gear and changing batteries and staring up into eternity with spectacular meteors burning up in the cosmic shore out the corner of your eye. Doing this sort of thing has bought me closer and closer to the wilderness. There is something about doing this sort of stuff that just makes you want to keep coming back for more and more. Maybe it's the experience of being out there at one with the incredible beauty of this landscape. Maybe it's the challenge of capturing it in the camera in the way that you witnessed it. Maybe it's the excitement of seeing just what you got when you finally render it all out. Maybe it's the satisfaction you get out of showing this to other people. Most probably it's a combination of all these things.
I hope you enjoy watching this timelapse. Please leave a comment if you wish, I'd love to hear from you. It is my hope that in bringing back a little piece of nature to portray in this way helps spark the respect we need to have for such an incredible place.
All scenes shot in the North Island of New Zealand.
Main equipment used:
Canon 5D Mark II & various Canon Lenses
Dynamic Perception Stage Zero 6ft Dolly
"Go Beyond" by Ben and Matt Hales, licensed for use through Universal Publishing Production Music and APRA New Zealand.
Thanks to my family for putting up with my habit ;)