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The 2013 Arizona Monsoon in Timelapse

Earlier this year I released my first ever short film that collected a bunch of timelapses I photographed during the 2012 monsoon season in Arizona. I was incredibly proud of that film and I was amazed at how well-received it was by all of you! It’s been played over 45k times and the feedback was so wonderful…it of course spurred me on to do another one!

This latest film is from the recently completed 2013 monsoon season. Out here in Arizona the season runs from June 15th through September 30th but in reality these timelapses were photographed between July 1st and September 18th.

It was quite a summer. I drove well over 8,000 miles all across Arizona. I didn’t get to venture up north as much as I wanted, but I was all over central and southeast Arizona. In fact, I saw two fairly incredible storms down south this year…hail cores, shelf clouds…weather I don’t normally expect to see here in Arizona.

This year was a lot different than 2012. Other than one great haboob, the dust storms weren’t very intense this summer. But the lightning was better for me and I think you’ll enjoy that section a lot more than last year! One of the things people said they really enjoyed on the first film was the lightning sequences…and they were super short. Not this year!

I so loved putting this together. It’s taken me weeks of editing and re-editing, mixing music, etc., to get this to this final version. The music is mostly from Luke Neumann, but Kevin Macleod has a song in there as well. I love those guys for allowing artists to use their work royalty-free! Their websites are in the title credits.  The movie is just under 12 minutes long, so I suggest watching it when you can sit back and enjoy it. I tested it out on the ol’ plasma yesterday and it was fun to kick back on the couch and watch it on the big screen.

People usually have questions about my timelapse work, so here are some answers ahead of time:

  • At this point I don’t use dolly’s or motion because most of the time I’m setting up in a matter of seconds and timelapsing for short periods of time. Next year will be different though. I hope.
  • Everything was shot on Canon products. I used a 5D3 and two 5D2’s with random lenses (including a Rokinon 14mm). I list them all in the film credits.
  • Most of these were shot at 1-2 second intervals.

I hope you dig the film. If you have any comments or questions, please leave them below and I will do my best to answer every one of them!

Thank you for watching! I suggest the big screen, when you can sit back and enjoy it!

P.S. There is a little outtake at the very very end 🙂

The Bane of my Backyard

It’s my fault really. We’re in the midst of selling our house, it’s been a long process and since we’re moving, some stuff got cut. Like pest control. I don’t think you have any real idea of how effective those guys are until you go without it for a few months.

This is a Black Widow spider, very common to Arizona and the desert southwest. You can pretty much determine it’s a Black Widow on sight, even without the tell-tale hourglass on their abdomens. Their webs are super strong…one touch and you basically know that it’s this venomous spider without even seeing it.

A few nights ago I saw a web stringing from my tree to the border around it and noticed a bunch of tiny little specks of light. Oh no. Realized quickly it was hundreds of baby black widows newly hatched from an egg sack. Then I decided to find the momma and oh boy, was she a BIG MOMMA. It’s hard to tell in this photo, but this has to be one of the biggest black widow’s I’ve seen up close. From leg to leg, I think over 2 inches.

I had to grab the camera and the 50mm. They love the dark, so I didn’t have long before the flashlight chased it off, but luckily I got a snap off quickly.

I didn’t kill it for some reason…it was kind of beautiful in a way…but no worries, pest control will be back ASAP.