We all know that as the seasons change on Earth, temperatures rise and fall, plants grow or die, ice forms or melts away. Perhaps nobody is more aware of this than NASA’s Visible Earth team who provide a vast catalog of images of our home planet as seen from space. Last month designer, cartographer, and dataviz expert John Nelson download a sequence of twelve cloud-free satellite imagery mosaics of Earth, one from each month, and then created a number of vivid animated gifs showing the seasonal changes in vegetation and land ice around the world.
Despite having encountered numerous seasonal timelapse videos shot here on Earth, this is the first time I’ve ever seen anything like this visualized on such a large scale from space. It really looks like a heartbeat or the action of breathing. Read more over on Nelson’s blog, or see a much larger version of the gif here. (via Co.Design)
Time can be a difficult variable to visually convey in still photography, both the length of time an exposure takes or a series of photos meant to depict the passage of time can be somewhat ambiguous without a written explanation. In his latest series, Time is a dimension, Singapore-based photographer Fong Qi Wei (previously) explores just that idea by shooting landscapes from a stationary position over a 2-4 hour period and then digitally slicing the images to create a layered collage. He shoots at sunset or sunrise to obtain a wide variation in light and then carefully cuts each image to reveal incremental timeframes. He explains:
The basic structure of a landscape is present in every piece. But each panel or concentric layer shows a different slice of time, which is related to the adjacent panel/layer. The transition from daytime to night is gradual and noticeable in every piece, but would not be something you expect to see in a still image.
Similarly, our experience of a scene is more than a snapshot. We often remember a sequence of events rather than a still frame full of details. In this series, I strive to capture both details and also a sequence of time in a single 2 dimensional canvas. I hope it gives you pause and reconsider what you experience versus what you shoot with your next camera phone.
You can see many more examples on his website, and read more about his process right here.
Mirror City is the latest video from photographer and filmmaker Michael Shainblum that takes time-lapse footage of Chicago, San Francisco, San Diego, Las Vegas and Los Angeles and runs it through a constantly shifting kaleidoscopic pattern of mirrors. Shainblum says of the piece took about four months to edit and adds:
These clips were all processed from their original form, into the kaleidoscopic visuals that you see in this video. Many people visit these large cities every day, and all of these places have been shot and filmed, but I wanted to emulate these urban landscapes in a way that nobody has even seen before. I wanted to put man-made geometric shapes, mixed with elements of color and movement to create less of a structured video, and more of a plethora of visual stimulation.
And a plethora of visual stimulation it is indeed. The fun part for me was trying to recognize all of the different cities as the patterns become more abstract and chaotic. Amazing editing. I definitely suggest watching it full-screen with HD turned on. (via vimeo)
Shot over a period of two years by filmmaker Simon Christen, Adrift is “a love letter to the fog of the San Francisco Bay Area.” For the last two years Christen woke up at 5am and pored over weather data, satellite photos, and online webcams to determine whether or not the conditions were right to make the 45 minute drive to the Marin Headlands to shoot. Many days the filming was a bust, but occasionally the weather, light and filming conditions would align perfectly and he would manage to capture a few seconds of usable (and extraordinary) footage.
The resulting time-lapse film is nothing short of astounding. The puffy fog flows, undulates and seemingly swallows parts of the city in its perpetual state of motion. You might recognize Christen’s work from his other outstanding time-lapse, The Unseen Sea, from about three years ago.
You can see much more of the photographer’s work over on 500px. Adrift is set to music by The Album Leaf and you can download it for free here. (via vimeo)
This fun hyperlapse video was shot on Tokyo’s fully-automated Yurikamome transit system by a photographer/filmmaker who goes by darwinfish105. The visuals in the video were achieved using an array of mirror and vertical flip effects in Adobe Premiere. You might remember similar videos shot by Daihei Shibata and Craig Shamala from back in 2010, however this new video seems to have been shot predominantly from the front/back of the train giving the video a somewhat different feel. If you liked this you might also enjoy these transit photos by Céline Ramoni, also taken on board the Yurikamome. (via faith is torment)
Somewhere in Melbourne there is a giant decaying warehouse now covered in some two dozen pieces by graffiti writer Sofles. Filmed and edited by Celina Mills, this impressive time-lapse shot over an indeterminate amount of time (this has to have taken more than a day, right?) documents Sofles as he whips out tags and more complex graffiti paintings in a seemingly limitless variety of styles, texture and color. (via stellar)
On June 3rd of this year after four years of trying, Arizona photographer and storm chaser Mike Olbinski finally got the shot he’d been searching for: the formation of a gigantic rotating supercell. After four trips to the central plains since 2010, Oblinski and friend Andy Hoeland were tracking storms in northern Texas last week when they spotted this unbelievable cloud formation. The duo were actually forced to drive right through the storm system (which didn’t spawn a tornado) to obtain this unworldly footage that might as well have been shot on Jupiter, but in the end it was all worth it. Make sure to view it in HD, full-screen, and you can read more about the once-in-a-lifetime encounter over on his blog. (via vimeo)
Update: Olbinski is offering the photo above as a print.