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Photography Science

Spectacular Footage Records Seven Moths as They Take Flight in Stunningly Slow Motion

August 4, 2021

Grace Ebert

Almost a year after releasing his wildly popular footage of muppet-like insects, Dr. Adrian Smith is back with another montage in incredibly slow motion. This similarly spectacular follow-up—which is shot at 6,000 frames per second with a macro lens—documents the unique flight maneuvers of seven moth species as they slowly lift into the air. Capturing both graceful wing movements and ungainly leg flailing, Smith records rare glimpses of the yellow underbelly of the Virginian tiger moth, the spiky mohawk of the white-dotted prominent, and the beautiful wood-nymph’s habit of scattering microscopic scales all with extraordinary detail. For more close-ups of moths, beetles, and other insects, head to Smith’s YouTube. (via The Kids Should See This)

 

 

 



Design

In the New Video Game 'Stray,' Players Venture through a Decaying Cybercity as a Stealthy Cat

August 3, 2021

Grace Ebert

Having the stealth and nimble reflexes of a cat is the only way to escape the dangerous droids and perilous environment of “Stray.” Created by BlueTwelve Studio, the highly anticipated video game immerses players in a futuristic metropolis as a lonely, injured feline in search of its family. With the help of a drone named B-12, the sprightly creature has to evade the threats of the dystopian city as it roams the neon-lit alleys, leaps through rundown, graffiti-covered buildings, and nuzzles up to human-like robots.

Watch the game’s walkthrough above for a better sense of the cat’s abilities—endlessly annoying its fellow city-dwellers is unsurprisingly one of its defenses—before it’s released early next year for PC and PS5. You can also follow its progress on Twitter. (via Laughing Squid)

 

 

 



Photography

Spring Emerges in an Enchanting Timelapse of Denmark's Landscapes

August 2, 2021

Grace Ebert

Roskilde, Denmark-based photographer Casper Rolsted ventures into the deciduous forests of Skjoldungernes Land National Park, out to the mist-covered inlets of Ise Fjord, and across the ice-age regions of West Zealand to capture springtime transformations in Scandinavia. Daffodils and lilies slough off the remaining snow as they burst open, the sunlight illuminates the environment for longer periods, and expanses of brown grass and leaf cover morph into verdant terrain.

A timelapse shot both on the ground and aerially, “Seasons of Denmark—Spring” is the first of four short films chronicling the country’s seasonal landscapes. Keep an eye out for the remaining three on Rolsted’s Vimeo, where you can also find more of his montaged adventures around Norway, Scotland, and other remote areas.

 

 

 

 



Documentary Photography

Guardians of Paradise: An Intimate Short Film Peers into Life in Burma

July 30, 2021

Grace Ebert

Comprised of footage shot between 2018 and 2020, “Guardians of Paradise” offers an intimate and sensitive glimpse at Burmese life. The short film shows children at play on docks, a fisherman as he pulls in his net, and others as they practice religious rituals in an attentive look at the joyful, trying, and mundane moments.

Directed by Ivan Maria Friedman of the Lausanne, Switzerland-based studio Maya Pictures with music by Max Richter, “Guardian’s of Paradise” is a small window into the Southeast Asian country prior to the February 1 miliary coup, which was prompted by unfounded claims of voter fraud following the election of National League for Democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi. “In a moment where they need international attention the most, this work wishes to portray the uniqueness of the Burmese culture, as well as to bear witness of their incredible strength, whose true power lies in compassion, gracefulness, true generosity, and human dignity,” Friedman says.

See more candid photos and footage from the filmmaker’s visits on Instagram.

 

 

 



Animation

A Kind Pine Cone Helps an Elderly Man Survive a Cold Winter in a Heartwarming Stop-Motion Animation

July 28, 2021

Grace Ebert

Sometimes help comes from unexpected sources, especially when you need it most. That’s the central message behind a heartfelt stop-motion short written, directed, and animated by Dunedin, New Zealand-based Claire Campbell. “Winter’s Blight” follows an elderly man named Bill, who struggles to heat his home during a harsh cold spell. After he runs out of wood entirely, he’s forced to chop down the lone evergreen still standing in his yard, only to encounter an enthusiastic pine cone that begs him to stop.

Produced by Jon Wilson of Shine on Films with music by Hanan Townshend, the animation took more than five years to complete and is replete with meticulously crafted details, like Bill’s hand-knit sweaters and an elaborate set built true to scale. Watch this making-of video and check out Campbell’s Instagram for a behind-the-scenes look at how it came together.

 

 

 



Science

A Scorpion and Her Babies Emit a Fluorescent Blue and Purple Glow Under UV Light

July 26, 2021

Grace Ebert

Artist Sarah Folts explores the vast world of insects and arachnids, and she recently captured extraordinary footage of an unusual phenomenon. Under UV light, a scorpion and the babies cradled on her back radiate a bright blue and purple glow caused by proteins in the pincered creatures’ exoskeletons—the younger predators will stay in this position until their shells adequately harden. Scientists are unsure what the evolutionary purpose of the fluorescent color is, although theories include an inadvertent chemical reaction, a tactic for deceiving prey, and the novel idea that their entire bodies function as giant eyes. (via Laughing Squid)