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Setting sun, rising stars… an HDR timelapse over Manchester

This dramatic timelapse was commissioned as part of the highlights video production for the recent Manchester International Festival. We’ve been working on extremely high-resolution timelapse footage for many years, specialising in capturing the subtleties and richness which conventional techniques cannot do justice to.

Working with long-term film partners Toasted Productions, Anti Limited shot this piece across the Manchester skyline, which you can watch as part of the MIF 2011 highlights film on the link below.

I’m pleased to announce it’s also been chosen to be incorporated into a regular broadcast feature on the digital ‘Community Channel’ in the UK, starting in November 2011. This, alongside some of Anti Limited’s other cutting-edge high dynamic range timelapse material, will feature in the credits for ‘UK360’, a news programme covering the whole country. Obviously we’re more than happy to be helping to represent the North West!

Special thanks to MIF for allowing this piece to be licensed by the non-for-profit Media Trust, so it will be seen by an even wider audience.

John Rylands Library, Manchester

Enjoyed the chance to have a nosey around the John Rylands Library in Manchester earlier today, as part of a brief guided tour for photographers.

It’s a stunning building; with so many views and details the hour flew by. I had a great time, saw lots of things I’d like to have spent more time shooting, and would urge anyone to check out this architectural gem in the city centre.

The majority of these shots are HDR, shot with a variety of exposures; some 3x AEB and others up to 9x with a Promote controller, then processed in Photomatix and Lightroom.

An early welcome to the Pleasure Dome

The day before the Royal Wedding was absolutely glorious: clear, warm and sunny across the country. I was up way too early, on the train from Manchester to London for work, but had spotted this funfair the day before and had resolved to shoot it. Fairground are rather odd places, and it’s rare to see them empty, so I left the house fifteen minutes early, fortified by coffee.

The first tremulous rays of dawn broke over the reservoir just as I arrived: I quickly set up my kit and snatched this shot without attracting anyone’s attention. I’m definitely not a morning person, but there’s something rewarding about being up early to see such delicate light and such an absence of people paired with such intense paintwork.

HTML5 version

Click the icons above to view a fullscreen 360° view of the scene with Flash (for desktop) or HTML5 (for mobile). You can also view the location in Google Earth or read more about it in Wikipedia. Happy viewing!

Summer’s evening on the beach…

Enjoying a brief Indian summer on a beach at the side of a Pennine reservoir. We started the summer with a heatwave; and despite a lot of rain in the last month, water levels are still significantly lower than they should be, exposing sandy foreshores and hitherto hidden features such as walls and gateposts.

This is Baitings reservoir near Ripponden: I’ve previously photographed this place as I love the sheltered, glassy surface of this stretch of water. This evening was truly glorious though, loved the light, and caught the sun just as it started to dip over the skyline. Shot as a 9 exposure HDR, which captured the full range of the sun’s colour and warmth.

Click below for a full screen 360° view of the scene with Flash, to see the location in Google Earth, or to view an iPhone/iPad/iPod Touch compatible version.

Forgotten places: the empty workshop

Inside an old-fashioned outhouse workshop on a vacant farmstead in County Antrim, near the village of Cullybackey. The abandoned farm lies a short distance from the picturesque Arthur Cottage, the ancestral home of the 21st President of the USA, Chester Alan Arthur.

This is deep in prime agricultural country; the fields around are filled with new barley and potatoes. However farming life isn’t always easy, and while the fields look verdant and well stocked, derelict farms and cottages pay silent testimony to a time when more folk worked the land around here. Who knows what lives once lit up the walls of this building, and whose voices rang out across the farm?

The whole site seemed remarkably peaceful and undisturbed when I visited and captured this scene. I wanted to encapsulate this feeling of restful timelessness within the panorama, to let the space tell its own story with a thousand tiny details, so I took my time and shot multiple exposures to combine later. I think the results were worth it.

This was my contribution to the most recent Worldwide Panorama event, entitled ‘Forgotten Places’. The version on that site was enfused: I revisited the scene after submittingf that, and this version is based on a 9 exposure HDR set, then tonemapped.

Click the icons below for a fullscreen 360° view of the scene in Flash, or to locate the scene in Google Earth.