The Brooklyn Brewery is hitting the US with its MASH Tour – a festival of food, film, music, books, and beer that’s coming to eleven cities across the continental states. To advertise this, they put together this fantastic stop motion photography tour of Brooklyn, New York, that features all these things that the MASH celebrates:
There is a lot going on in this video that makes it so visually interesting. The combination of stop- and slow-motion style keeps the pace going, while directing emphasis to those elements that it wants you to pay special attention to (the stir-fry pan, the record, the book, and of course the beer). The seamless movement between different perspectives, from the bike to the Frisbee to the street, keeps us constantly on our feet and waiting for what comes next.
In one part, the filmmakers (production company Transient Pictures, headed by Jeremy Levine and Landon Van Soest) employ the technique that I wrote about a while back, as they create a hyper-lapse sequence around a water tower. In the spirit of the festival, which the brewery describes as “An adventurous mix of the best cultural happenings from our neighborhood and yours; dinner parties, concerts, comedy, readings and humanity’s favorite beverage”, they employ a variety of photographic techniques in a single minute-long video, which parallels the aim of the MASH on the whole.
The principle of stop-motion photography is simple; instead of taking a video, you take photo after photo after photo as you move around your scene. It is most often employed in animation, such as in The Nightmare Before Christmas, The Gumby Movie, and very early South Park episodes, where hand-crafted figurines would be assembled within a set. A picture would be taken, the figures would be moved a fraction of a centimeter, and another picture would be taken; this would continue ad infinitum (so it seemed), until an entire movie had been assembled frame by frame. At 24 frames per second, that’s roughly 129,600 photos to make up a 90 minute movie.
This film employs the same idea, but instead of figurines or paper cut-outs, the photographer would have held or mounted the camera to his body and taken the photographs out in the real world, most likely employing the use of a rapid-fire continuous shutter mode to keep snapping as the surroundings passed. Using some creative editing, he managed to move from a bike seat to street, across the air, and through a bus window with barely a pause, never slowing down the pace of this stunning blend of film and photography.
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