A Year of Forest Life Captured with Timelapse Photography

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While living on the outskirts of  Bloomington, Indiana, filmmaker and photographer Samuel Orr started collecting short bits of timelapse footage of his property when he started kicking around the idea of making a timelpase that spanned over the course of a year. Orr didn’t have to look for a captivating subject. In fact, he set up his camera at a window in his house, which he collected photographs with over the span of 15 months. Take a look, right here:

Hoping to be able to capture all of the seasons and blend them into a single film, Orr set up a spare camera–a spare, half-broken Nikon Coolpix 5400– on a tripod and started his project. He started by collecting five to eight second clips of timelapse footage, especially on days of notable importance such as when it was snowing or there were interesting cloud patterns moving over the trees.

He then edited the short clips into a the final project, A Forest Year. All together, Orr collected around 40,000 still photographs to complete the film.

timelapse video

“big issue was how to set up. I couldn’t use my main camera(s) as I needed them for other things.  In the end, I used a spare Nikon coolpix 5400, which even in 2006, was obsolete.  The data port was broken, so it was tricky getting the memory card out to download images (there are noticeable little moves in the framing in the film itself because of introduced error), but in the end the camera sat on the same unmoving tripod for 16 months.  I  automatically snapped pictures at intervals between every 10 seconds and every 10 minutes at key times of the year (snowfall, spring, fall colors), usually the camera was switched off.”

For Further Training on Time-lapse Photography:

There is a popular COMPLETE guide (146 pages) to shooting, processing and rendering time-lapses using a dslr camera. It can be found here: Time-lapse Photography Guide

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One Comment

  1. David Halver says:

    Whoa… Great concept & gorgeous execution! The wonderful Montage of Sounds & the subtle Music only adds to this captivating work. Well done!

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