When looking in a science textbook or a toy mobile of the solar system, it’s easy to depict the sun, planets and moon to scale in comparison to each other. What’s not so easy to visually comprehend the staggering distance that separates each planet on its individual orbit around the sun. Filmmakers Alex Gorosh and Wylie Overstreet challenged themselves to build such a model and the result is this fascinating short film To Scale.
Starting with the Earth as the size of a marble, it turns out you need an area about 7 miles (11.2km) to squeeze in the orbit of the outermost planet, Neptune. The team used glass spheres lit by LEDs and some GPS calculations to map out the solar system on the dry bed of the Black Rock Desert in Nevada. Once nighttime arrived they shot a timelapse from a nearby mountain that accurately reflects the distance of each orbital path at a scale of roughly 1:847,638,000. Amazing.
San Francisco-based artist and illustrator Karla Ortiz works by day as a concept artist for Marvel Film Studios, but in her spare time also produces surreal fine art illustrations rendered in graphite. Seen here is a timelapse of a new piece that will be on view later this week as part of a new body of work titled Omens at Thinkspace Gallery.
Much has been written lately about the plight of the monarch, the most iconic butterfly in North America that may soon be headed for the endangered species list. The use of herbicides in the U.S. has completely decimated milkweed plants, the insect’s primary food source, while illegal logging is quickly destroying the monarch’s wintering habitat in Mexico. Over 90% of the butterfly’s population has vanished over the last 25 years.
This amazing HD timelapse from Front Yard Video shows the full metamorphosis of a monarch from a caterpillar to butterfly. What you see here is infuriatingly difficult to witness in person because after weeks of waiting the transformation to and from a chrysalis takes just a few minutes. (via The Kid Should See This)
Nine hours of a Cassandra flower blooming/ GIF by National Geographic
Ten hours of Eroica flowers / GIF by National Geographic
Antimatter flowers / GIF by National Geographic
Echinopsis cacti have some of the most brilliant flowers of any cactus, with vibrantly colored petals and explosive blooms that look almost like bursting fireworks. The trick is actually seeing it. The cacti bloom only late at night, and even then only for a few hours. The peak moment of beauty may only last an hour.
Lucky for us, Echinopsis enthusiast Greg Krehel has a knack for catching these blooming succulents in the act. When one of his specimens looks like it’s about to bloom, Krehel brings it inside and films it overnight with a special HD time-lapse setup. Gathered in this video is a montage of his favorite shots from the 2014 season, and he’s already posting new videos from this spring on Vimeo. (via National Geographic)
From friends who are digital artists, retouchers, or illustrators, I sometimes hear stories of clients who suggest projects should go faster or simply cost less because the software “does it all for you.” While the tools are indeed more efficient and impressive with each new Photoshop or Illustrator release, the skill required to master those tools is still substantial. Case in point, this new time-lapse from Argentinian photographer and retoucher Joaquin Villaverde who demonstrates his Photoshop abilities by giving new life to a severely damaged black and white portrait of a girl. The clip shows two hours of work condensed into three minutes. (via PetaPixel)
Artist Joe Mangrum (previously) was just in Zuidlaren, Netherlands, where he was commissioned by the Doe Museum to create 8 temporary sand paintings over a period of 11 days. All of Mangrum’s paintings are spontaneous and evolve as he works, a grueling physical process that involves dozens of revolutions around the artwork as he adds new details and flourishes by pouring brightly colored sand. All eight artworks were photographed as he worked and turned into time-lapse videos, three of which are included here. The sand paintings will remain on view through October 30, 2015. You can follow more of Mangrum’s work on Facebook.