Day 5: Time Lapsing
Today’s sunrise was the most beautiful yet; perfect timing, especially because I chose to do a time- lapse; which today, is not that big of a deal, especially when there’s a time-lapse function built right into just about every smart phone at the push of a button. It wasn’t always this way.
All technology, especially communication’s technology, defies the laws of time & space; in other words, it gives humans the ability to control and manipulate time; to freeze time or a moment, speed it up, slow it down, or capture it, saving it for the future; really, in essence, technology provides us a form of time travel. Today, we usually think about technology as being something new, digital, and electronic. But truth is, technology is anything that is an extension of the body and our five senses. Ancient tools were an extension of our physical bodies used to build, carve, and defend. Much later, man used a variety of technologies to begin to express what started to overflow from their heads; hence, the first storytellers. We have cave paintings in Australia that tell the history of man spanning 100,000 years and, in a way, these paintings capture the human story utilizing different technologies throughout the ages, allowing ancient man to send their messages, stories, and posts into the future, still communicating with us today. Ancient Facebook, or, FaceCave, if you will. You see, we’re not so different from our ancient forefathers & mothers. The same impulses that inspired them to post their stories and messages on cave walls, are the same impulses driving us to do the same today, with the same goal of trying to make sense of all the wonder and mystery. The only difference today, is our cave walls have become digital walls. In the end, we're simply Digital Cavemen & Cavewomen.
I did my first time lapse in 1990 after my big brother Scott bought a video camera. It was an advanced camera for the times and we filmed everything. Mainly, we filmed ourselves flexing and dancing around the house. I took that camera to every party my senior year of high school and have some 40 left over VHS tapes. I was obsessed with that camera. In those days, there was no one who knew how to properly operate video cameras. Just connecting them to the television in order to watch your home videos, was near impossible. In fact, there were 1000’s of families with video cameras from that time period who probably were never able to watch their home videos. But not me, I actually studied the manual that came with the camera and figured out through the labyrinth of cables and connectors, how to not only hook it up to the tv, but to also do some basic video editing. Somewhere in that manual, I came across a time lapse setting; when programed, the camera could film for one second out of every minute. To get ten seconds of video, you needed to film for ten minutes. I was so excited and was trying to explain to my friends and brothers and sisters about what this all meant etc. No one knew what the hell I was talking about, nor cared. I climbed up on the roof of the house and set the camera on a tripod in order to time-lapse a storm that was coming in. (See below). From this point forward, I preceded to do time- lapses on and off over the years using a wide variety of technology. These were not easy by no means. Not that long ago, you needed some very serious camera and computer power to pull off time-lapses, not to mention patience and know how. One method I used in the early days was to film on video for one straight hour, load into the computer and then speed it up. The footage was so heavy and took so much time to process and compress, store, edit, master, author and export to VHS or DVD, it could take weeks to produce. Then with the advent of DSLR cameras it became a little easier to do with stills, but still required a timer and some heavy editing and processing and compressing and some know how to boot. But today, so easy, just a push of a button; these youngins. . .if they only knew.
As a culture, we capture so much footage on a daily basis, that we have the ability to create time lapses of our entire lives, over any period of time we choose, using multiple mediums. In the future, Digital Paleontologist are going to have their work cut out for them as they sift through Yottabytes (1 Trillion Terabytes) of 1’s and 0’s trying to interpret snaps, tweets, chats and some strange alien hacked up, hashed up, abbreviated, foreign txting lingo. WTF!!! LOL!!!
Here’s a series of snips from today. It was a birthday celebration day and I was not expecting so many things to happen, or planning to capture so many moments. I got to time-lapse the sunrise and paddle surf in the morning; then hang out with family and friends and eat homemade pizza baked by my wonderful sister-in-law visiting from Buenas Aires; then we went to the beach, swam, goofed off with the kids in the water and then got rained on. Most left the beach; My friend Bobby showed up with a $50 birthday beer he brought from Vermont the night before; I caught a time-lapse of stormy clouds coming in; played my new baritone horn on the beach with Bobby on drum; then returned home to a dance party in my living room that lasted for 4 hours of straight dancing with a bunch of crazy Argentinians to old records from my record collection and some bluetooth youtube thrown in for songs like Gasolina. . .because, what’s a birthday without dancing to “Gasolina”?
Magical Sunrise with Ocean & Rocko!!
The Caveman Doggy Shake: Wait for it!!
Time-Lapsing. Beautiful Stormy clouds: Over the years I've learned that the beach is beautiful under any circumstances.
Two old friends with a Horn and a Drum in the dark on the beach! We had a group of yogis come and sit in front of us to listen.
Thanks to Jackie, Rodrigo, Andrea, Maru, Jonathan, and of course my wonderful wife Ely Bistrong for always being ready to throw a dance party!!
First Time-Lapse: 1990