For the last few years, Michael Shainblum has quietly been creating some of the most compelling time-lapse films in the world. While originally known for his incredible Milky Way photographs, Shainblum has mastered the art of the time-lapse film. And his latest creation, Symphony of Light: Kauai proves just that.
Shainblum was intrigued by the shapes and forms on the Hawaiian island of Kauai and he sought to showcase them through the relationship between light and shadow. While just reading that description may be hard to visualize, once you see the film, you can see exactly what Shainblum had in mind.
On his blog, Shainblum tells us about the shooting locations in the film and provides behind the scenes photos to go hand in hand with the stills from the film.
I spent multiple days scouting and exploring the trails looking for interesting compositions and hoping for some interesting lighting. The constant clouds rolling over made for some really interesting light play on these three waterfalls in the right image. It was one of the more difficult shots to set up and on either side of the tripod was a sheer drop down into the valley.
Further down the trail were some amazing views of the green spires. I was really lucky to catch the sun blazing on the peaks during sunset. I had tried shooting this scene three times. But each time I tried the clouds ended up dappling the light too much during sunset. What I really wanted was a constant fade of vivid light into darkness. I was lucky to catch a really nice, unobscured sunset on the last day of my trip.
The light rays were something out of a fairy tale. I managed to catch two timelapses at this spot, before the light rays faded and the whole scene was covered in shadow.
The lush foliage and beautiful lighting made for a really nice scene. I had to run this shot twice due to technical issues. But it ended up being a good thing as the light got better for the 2nd run.
Pu’u O Kila Lookout
After watching the film and seeing the photos, it’s easy to see why Shainblum has such love for the island of Kauai.
The experience was amazing and getting to know this beautiful island was an absolute pleasure.
Michael Shainblum worked with Andrew Studer on this trip, and he thanks him for the endless help he provided.