Stunning Time-Lapse Video: “Existence”

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June 6 2013 11:18 AM

Time-Lapse: “Existence”

time-lapse video: Existence
The Milky Way looms over a fog-shrouded city in "Existence".

Photo by Michael Shainblum, from the video

I’ve been posting time-lapse videos for a while now, and while I wouldn’t say I’m jaded, it does take something special to catch my attention these days.

Michael Shainblum got my attention. Using shots of the night sky as well as in an urban setting, he put together an extraordinary collection of scenes in his video, “Existence.”

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(Set it to HD, make it full screen, turn up the speakers, be mesmerized.)

A great time-lapse video is more than just a bunch of accelerated scenes. It needs to be edited well and flow well, and the addition of the right music makes all the difference in the world. I loved the song he used for this, “The Game Has Changed” by Daft Punk from the Tron: Legacy soundtrack. In fact, Shainblum says he made the video as a tribute to the music. As for me, I liked the soundtrack so much that after I watched the video I bought the album, too (affiliate link).

Shainblum fit the scenes to the music, right down to the visual feel of each clip building with the music and the hyperlapse at the end. It’s amazingly dramatic.

The advent of digital photography is letting us see our world in a new way and allowing a lot of people to show it to us in this manner, too. Even without using time-lapse, Shainblum’s astrophotography is gorgeous. Go take a look.

Phil Plait writes Slate’s Bad Astronomy blog and is an astronomer, public speaker, science evangelizer, and author of Death From the Skies!  

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