I have been chasing different storm systems in many different stages for the past 5 years. This has taken me many thousands of miles across this plain known as Tornado Alley. I try to make my methodologies unique by capturing the cinematic beauty of every storm that I chase. I want to show a side of storms that is rarely seen; the view that demonstrates its true motion and personality. My first attempt at a time-lapse was of a building updraft so it is very fitting that clouds and storms are my main focus. Storms have a dark side as well, with the most severe forms being able to destroy people’s vehicles, homes and even their lives. Nevertheless, I think we can all agree that they can create beautiful natural structures. Structures that are out of our control, that move wherever the environment allows them to. That is why I have made it my goal to document and shoot these storms as they travel across the heartland of the United States. Maybe in some small way I am able to show some good out of the bad.
My song selection comes from the inspiring composer Tony Anderson. I found Tony's work about a year ago and I haven't stopped listening since. His talent for audio story telling allows you to listen for hours and still leaves you wanting more. I chose the score "Wir Sind Gleich" for this film because I think it added the dramatic and emotional tension that I was needing to create. Please go check out Tony Anderson, you won't be disappointed.
Gear: Canon 5D Mark iii, Two Canon T3i's, Canon 24-70L f/4, Canon 17-55 f/2.8
Music Score: Wir Sind Gleich - Tony Anderson (Licensed through Music Bed)
19 shots comprised of 6,905 individual still photographs.
Photos edited in Adobe Lightroom and Photoshop.
Video and score edited in Adobe Premiere Pro.
"Sounds of a Storm"
Storm chasing season 2015 took me to the heartland of Kansas. Earlier in the day storm production looked promising in the Barber County area. I got there early and the dryline started to sharpen, but no storms. No clouds in the sky. I had maybe and hour of sunlight left and I decided to head home. I stopped at a local gas station to fuel up when I saw a small cell off in the distance. It didn't look like much on radar, but it was the most action I saw all day. I loaded up and headed west into the hilly terrain of the Gypsum Hills. As I peaked over a hill and set up my camera for the opening shot, I could tell this was a supercell. After taking the first shot I decided to move farther west to get closer. This storm had beautiful structure. Although there was no tornado, me and two other chasers were able to experience this storm to ourselves. I hope you enjoy!
Shot with: Canon t3i, Canon 17-55mm 2.8
Music: Chord Sounds - Moby
"Oklahoma Wildfire"
Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, and Colorado fell victims to harsh winds, dry grounds, and low humidity that dangerously put them into a big fire danger. This time-laspe was take of a wildfire that started in northern Oklahoma and burned over 3,000 acres and lasted just over 12 hours long. over 20 different agencies, including the National Guard, worked together to contain the out of control blaze. The fire finally stopped 1 mile south of the Oklahoma/Kansas border.
Shot with Canon 5D Mark iii, 24-70L f4
1 second intervals and 1,000 frames.
"Severe Thunderstorm in Kansas"
A severe thunderstorm builds and barrels through the small of Harper Kansas.
Shot with a Canon T3i, Canon 17-55mm f2.8.
"A Stormy Sunset"
Conditions became favorable for severe weather throughout the heartland. I gathered my gear and went out to find some structure. Although I didn't get on the best storm, it was still a sight to see. The storms stared to dissipate near dusk and the dying thunderstorms created a unique sunset over the farmlands of Kansas.
Shot with: GoPro Hero 3+ Silver
Music: Division (Ambient) - Moby
"Two-Hundred and Forty Years in the Making"
Independence Day commemorates the adoption of the Declaration of Independence 240 years ago in 1776 on July 4 by the Continental Congress. It declared that the thirteen American colonies regarded themselves as a new nation, the United States of America, and were no longer part of the British Empire. This is one of my favorites celebrations of our countries history. People leave their problems at home and come together as one to celebrate this national holiday. The colors of the fireworks are just as sobering. Bright red, white, and blue colors light the sky, with a roar of thunder, to inform the people that the community recognizes this great Nation.
I set up 2 cameras to capture the 2016 firework show at the Anthony Lake. We had such an incredible view. You couldn't help but to get this feeling of freedom and liberty.
Shot with: 2 Canon T3i's, Canon 17-55mm 2.8
Music Score: More Telegrams - Nick Glennie-Smith
"A New Dawn"
I recently went to Galveston Texas for a vacation. Being from Kansas, I know what beautiful sunrises look like; however, nothing could prepare me for viewing the sunrise from the ocean. When I first got to the beach it was dark and gray. You could make out the ocean tides as they rolled closer and closer to the beach. Then in the distance the sun rose, seemingly emerging from the ocean waters to reveal the hazy salt water fog across the horizon. The sky had a mesmerizing gradient that faded from orange to blue. The seagulls started chirping as they looked for small clams as they washed up with the early tide. Did it beat a Kansas sunrise? In some ways, yes. But I realized that they both demonstrate the beauty of this Earth and should not be forgotten. They will both be memories that will last for a lifetime.
Shot with: GoPro Hero 3+ Silver, 2 second interval time lapse. 750 photos.
"Fiery Harvest"
In the Heartland of Kansas, the farmers are working to harvest their golden wheat fields. All seems well until the dry fields ignite into a fiery smoke show. With the help of EMS and farmers the local firefighters work tirelessly to contain the blaze. The fire was quickly put out and the harvest continues into the night.
Shot on: Canon T3i, Canon 17-55mm 2.5
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