Storm Clouds

After yesterday’s post of despair here is a short time lapse of the gathering storm clouds. I hope it works ok. This is the edge of super typhoon Rammasun, which for us is merely a tropical cyclone gusting to 100kph.

I took it through my study window because the camera and tripod would have blown away in seconds. The marks that look like sensor spots are raindrops on my window.

I also offer an interesting still from the sequence:

Dark skies

This is created using the counter intuitive method of a superimposing a black and white process on a colour file. I opened the colour image in Photoshop as a smart object. I then launched Silver Efex Pro 2 as a filter. I chose the Full Dynamic (harsh) preset and applied that. Back in PS you can then change the blending mode to luminosity and bob’s your uncle, you get this gritty structure rendered in colour. Its fast and effective, just like Alka Seltzer and you don’t need a hangover first to get the benefit



23 thoughts on “Storm Clouds

  1. By jove I think you’ve got it down pat now. Great rendition of the moving clouds plus I saw how the wind was whipping the trees. I hope the storm is not to wicked and that the wind and rain will soon be over.

  2. Great time lapse photography! Smooth rushing clouds while the trees were whipping around.
    Hurricanes/cyclones are terrifying to say the least. Summer 2011, we just moved into our house in Maryland when hurricane Irene went right over us.
    Hope your daughter is feeling better today.

    • Hurricanes and typhoons are very scary if it is a direct hit. There is so much damage.

      YY is much better today thank you and is resting after her morning trip to the hospital.

  3. You take the most amazing photographs, Andrew. If you’re ever in Kansas between late spring and mid-fall, you should traipse around the states with Tornado Alley running through them. You could get some amazing funnel shots!

    • Thanks John. Its slightly tricky guessing the exposure for 400 frames as there are bright highlights in the clouds at times but then they go away. Getting a decent balance needs a bit of luck.

  4. The time-lapse works BRILLIANTLY ! – you are a determinedly triumphant photog. ! – and a most technically-minded one, as well. My compliments on achieving success through trials and miseries. 😀

  5. My first thought on this were what wonderfully clean windows you have. If I tried to shoot something similar through mine, all you’d see is a load of dust and bird shit. But merits of Windowlene aside, it was a wonderfully moving image. What our mate Winnie The Poo might describe as ‘a rather a blustery day’.

  6. Cool beans on the layer effect conversion, Andrew. I’ve been doing that on occasion for a while as there are some effects we can create in SEP that aren’t replicated elsewhere. It works really well in your rendering here.
    I’ve not done a single video/time lapse yet but am wondering….in editing, is it possible to do a spot healing action for your rain drops that can be applied throughout the collection of images? Not being critical…just wondering.
    Yes, your windows do seem quite clean. 🙂

    • Steve, I considered that but the problem is they keep moving. I would have to go through and do all 400 frames pretty much individually. Yawn! I’ll just take the window cleaning as a trade-off.

  7. Interestingly, I think the still is much more menacing than the time-lapse, can’t really explain why. Perhaps the still, by focussing on a particularly dramatic moment, leaves a stronger visual impression on the brain. The time-lapse is scary too.

  8. I loved the time lapsed film clip too. I watched it several time because there were different things to focus on … certainly the clouds capture the attention on the initial viewing, but I liked watching the impact of the wind on the water. Pretty cool!

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