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Palm Springs Photo Festival – Part 2: Time Lapse with Jeff Frost

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I spent 2 days at the festival doing a workshop on time lapse with Jeff Frost – one of the people who is taking the medium onto new and innovative places.  For all those who haven’t seen his work please check his website:

http://www.jeff-frost.com/

What I particularly love about his work is that he is really testing the boundaries of the genre and is one of the few time lapsers out there who is moving it more towards the art installation world.  Many have said that time lapse might have reached its peak with all the amazing nature pieces out there.  But Jeff has begun to show the possibilities and you can see – through his work especially – that the medium is just starting to get going in many ways.  Check out in particular the piece ‘Circle of Abstract Ritual‘ which is a great mix of time lapse, hyper lapse and video to create a seminal piece of stand-alone time lapse work:

https://vimeo.com/106181453

His course matched expectations to say the least.  He begun by telling us that this was probably the last time he would teach and he was willing to let the cat out of the bag and leave no stone unturned so to speak… and he was true to his word.  We spent a long time analysing his pieces and he would be very open about the techniques he used which was useful to say the least.

In particular what I really connected to was the hyper lapse technique where one would move in unpredictable ways in all directions – all done on a tripod and camera and using personal judgement when moving the tripod in a certain direction after each shot.  The dedication required to achieve some of the work he does is impressive and scary for me at the same time, but I love the medium and hope to take it forward on some level going forward into the future.

Learning as well as the possibilities to monetize the medium was very interesting to say the least.  For now, I have given my small pieces meant for show reel to one of the libraries I am working with who was interested in trying to sell them but I think in the long-term, after doing this course, I will probably scrap it all for show reel and start again.  Ideas and possibilities are endless and hopefully I will find some sort of niche in it in the future.

A quick first edit of ‘The Karoo – A Photographic Odyssey of a Changing Landscape’

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Been a longer while than usual since last posted here.  A lot has been going on in the background and of course jobs have come and gone but I have been quiet mainly because I have said enough about transformation from news photography and the such and trying to become a more book/print and gallery photographer and just wanted to get on with it.  Change has taken time for me because it requires a complete change in mindset and outlook not just towards work but in life in gen in my humble opinion.  I am not saying I have established myself yet in this more creative field!  Far from it.  But I feel I have come enough down the path and made enough tentative steps to introduce some of the new long-term projects I have been doing (I have already posted a lot from my first project on a small colored community here in South Africa on past blogs).  I have won some awards that stand out from the usual honorable mentions I usually achieve, managing 3rd Place and Honor of Distinction at the Annual Photography Masters Awards last year for work on one of the long-term projects.  I was also invited onto the internationally-renowned Lens Culture online to show work recently.  Baby steps – but def going slowly in the direction I want my style of work to go.  I will soon though be traveling Europe and Stateside to show a new portfolio which will be the true gauge of how far I have come.

 

I don’t have much more to say about news photography and the such.  But reading my last (ancient) blog and recent events both locally with a massive wild fire here in the Cape and internationally with the controversy raging fiercer than normal over World Press Awards winners, I feel compelled to write one last subsequent blog about it all (yes – I still complain and moan as in the past!). On other fronts – I have been working relentlessly to improve the style and content of my time lapse photography which has been coming along nicely and hope to have a show reel ready some time this year.  I will be doing a very useful workshop at the Palm Springs Festival in Cali with an established master in the genre, Jeff Frost and hope to hone the technique further there.

 

Anyways – the pics in the slideshow are actually from an old resurrected project which I first tentatively started in 2011.  At the time I think I wasn’t ready and am happy now I put it on the back burner at the time – but recently, with a changing style that I feel suits this project more, have brought it back to the forefront.  It essentially aims to visually chart the course of large-scale change about to transform the Karoo desert – a large expanse of sparsely populated land north of Cape Town where little has changed since the days of the first Voortrekkers (English and Dutch settlers who first moved inland away from the Cape Colony in South Africa).  The building of the SKA near Carnarvon (Square Kilometre Array Radio telescope) awarded in large part a few years back to South Africa and the discovery of the 5th largest deposit of shale oil in the world and subsequent exploration and forthcoming mass extraction will see the Karoo undergo the largest unprecedented change since the introduction of the railway in the mid-19th century.  The images in the series aim to at once capture the serenity and beauty of the Karoo but are also riddled with hints of brooding insecurity and doubt that the great change already in progress will inevitably bring to an ancient way of life essentially untouched for generations.

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