Aeria Gloris – An Epic Time-Lapse of the Rocky Mountains

This short little film, Aeria Gloris, marks my foray into time-lapse photography. I’ve enjoyed the many excellent time-lapse pieces I’ve seen from fellow artists on Vimeo, so I thought I’d give it a try.

The footage was shot around my neighborhood in Provo, Utah. (Film Trivia: Robert Redford’s house is about a 15 minute drive up the canyon from Provo.) This was the first time I ever attempted any time-lapse experiment. I shot it in 24p and increased the speed by 1,200 percent in Final Cut Pro to achieve the effect I desired. I chose to go with greyscale because I like the interplay of light and dark, and found that the colors distracted from this exchange.

This film was shot on a Canon T2i with the Canon 24-105 f/4L lens. The shots were all on a tripod, but it was windy, as you can see some jitter. I actually enjoy having a technical glitch or two like this because it adds a bit of randomness, or “human error.” It makes the film less mechanical and more organic. I like to think of this as being similar the painter’s technique “pentimento,” in which a false start that was changed over the course of the painting is left visible.

The music is Inner Universe composed by Yoko Kanno, performed by Origa. The lyrics are Russian, English, and Latin. “Aeria gloris” is a latin phrase meaning “heavenly glory.”

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4 comments

  1. I would definitely say your experiment was a success, Daniel, as well as your edit. I liked the black and white, and paired with the music it creates an austere atmosphere that feels like standing alone on the side of a mountain in the wind.

    I tried my first timelapse last week during a Thanksgiving trip to Hood Canal, and discovered a trick that you might find useful if you ever point your camera at the stars to do an astro timelapse: to get the footage to show up bright enough, you can duplicate the clip layer in Final Cut (or whatever editor you use), and then choose composite mode of “screen” or “add” on the topmost layer. It works great to brighten the scene overall without the problems that happen when you simply yank on the levels.

    1. I appreciate the great feedback! Actually, it’s funny, because your short “Two Sunsets” was what inspired me to try out a time-lapse. And I liked your tip about speeding up video footage up in post. I haven’t gotten an intervalometer yet, but it seems like it would be fun to try it that way too. That’s the great thing about these still/motion cameras, you have so many options.

  2. If you get an intervalometer, I recommend the cheap Aputure brand one, which you can get on ebay for less than $40 – it does the exact same thing the expensive Canon one does, for a fraction of the price. The connector is the same on the T2i and the 60D, so it works with both cameras.

    1. Awesome. Thanks for the tip!

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