In 2012 I’ve probably released one of the most beautiful short films I had ever done, called “Island in the Sky”. The film has touched a chord with many, and is an adventure into the marvelous Night Sky of the most Western Island on the Canary Island Archipelago – La Palma. It features one of the best crescent moonsets ever imaged by my colleague Babak Tafreshi of TWANight.org as well, and a soundtrack some have told me to be one of the best they have ever heard.
Horay, I am happy to announce a major new Version of “Island in the Sky” with many new scenes.
FEATURED ON MANY HOSTS WORLDWIDE
Amongst many hosts this Short film was featured in 2012 on National Geographic, Wired, CB, Nikon Rumours and even QUEEN’s Dr. Brian May put it on his personal website.
For this, one should know that Brian May has studied Astrophysics – with his Thesis focused on Zodiacal Light – both on Location in Tenerife and La Palma. He considers the top of Roque de los Muchachos as one of the most beautiful places on earth.
Brian May loved the Video and he was very moved by it (links here: “Island in the Sky finished“, “Nikon Rumors: Making of Island in the Sky“). And so was I then, and am still today. I can only say “Thank you very much” for his recommendation.
So far “Island in the Sky” has got 1.5 Mio. Views in over 150 Countries of the world, not included the Views on CBS and Wired.
Timelapse of course has also changed a lot since then, as well as processing techniques. I’d truly love to redo some of my old shots in processing, but unfortunately I don’t have access to most of the original RAW files from the first 2012 edit of “Island in the Sky”. Due to a failed Harddisk and a failed Backup of that. Murphy kicked in strongly. So I keep coming back to the Island to do new Images
Most of the new sequences happened during the Astromaster Workshop 2013 and 2014, where I was able to create a bit of new footage, but due to a flood of projects since then, never had the time to process much (a phenomenon very common with Time Lapsers all over the world).
WORKING TROUGH THE PROCESSING BACKLOG
But finally I have worked and processed trough this backlog now faster than ever with the Support of my Angelbird SSD2Go and Pocket Solid State Drives, and am happy to present a remastered Version (V15!) of “Island in the Sky”, with a couple of new scenes included and some older ones dropped off, scenes I was not so happy with.
Here are some Scenes explained with a little background info:
“The Trees” is a Day-night-Day Transition done with GBTimelapse somewhere in the Pine-Woods below Roque de los Muchachos. I am especially happy with this one as in the first half of the Night the Moon renders the Pines well, and after it disappears, the Milky Way becomes strongly visible. Also the passat clouds were very friendly with me, as they could have easily swept over the set that Night. Finally, while climbing down a steep slope to the location, I nearly crashed the Rigs.
This Sunset captured at Llano de Jable Lavafield was originally very shaky as it was windy and this is done with 200 mm. Also I had to manually transition this Sequence which was not that easy considering to not shake the camera much more than it already was by the wind (Nexus 7 Batteries dead, so no remote Control). Adobe After Effects’ VFX Stabilizer Filter has done an excellent job here – as always.
In this sequence I love the moment when the fog renders the stars and constellation Orion as well as the setting moon like with a diffusor. Nature at it’s best. To the right you can see the lights of El Paso and Llos Lanos shimmering trough the Sea of Clouds. It’s those moments, alone somewhere in the Lava Fields or Mountains of La Palma, that drag me back to this Island whenever possible.
This is part of a unattended Sequence. I had set up Cameras with some of the Course Attendees during Astromaster, and you are very busy then helping people out setting up their own stuff and getting the equipment going. So it is nice, that this shot turned out well. Milky Way with a very strong green airglow!! The 2nd part of this same sequence is seen again in the Film including a Meteor Persistent trail (see below).
This beautiful Capture happened during Astromaster 2013 and you have probably seen similar images from the course. As often happens up there at the Volcanic ridges, the wind was blowing strong on Roque that night, so if you watch closely, there are some blurred frames in here. Done with a Nexus 7, D800, AFS 24/1.4 and DSLRDashboard, so well, there is no interval ramping, which I usually prefer.
This is a very bumpy shot from Astromaster 2014, on top of Roque. Wind blowing very strong. But I am happy to have finally got a “Tajinaste” Sequence here. Palmeros freak out concerning these really beautiful, blossoming flowers during their season, and a Tajinaste shot was long on my list. So here it is. But still, I need to do more of these Lol.
Ha, this is not on La Palma you will think, and yes, this beautiful Transition with Venus and the Milky Way is captured from Teide National Park – but, as the camera pans right over La Gomera, it continues to pan and La Palma comes into view. The Original Sequence is much longer but had to be shortened to fit into the Edit. It captures the beautiful colors around and after Sunset, typical for La Palma and the Teide National Park.
This is a Fireball right between the rising Moon and Tenerife with the Teide Peak, Spains highest Mountain. In the Film, this Fireball develops a very nice Meteor Persistent Trail – “an ionization trail is created, where the molecules in the upper atmosphere are ionized by the passage of the meteor” (see Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Meteoroid)
The mixture of Red and Green Colors on this Sequence of the Milky Way above Mirador de Llano de Jable, is created by the effects of Calima, dry, eastern Sahara winds on the Canary Islands that carry Sahara Dust with them. Calima Images are often difficult to color correct (for Calima see http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Calima). The green Colors are caused by Airglow.
I am still a bit proud on this sequence as the conditions taking it were rather stormy. The area around Fuencaliente in the south of La Palma can be often very foggy, but if it clears up the views above the Ocean are spectacular. Strong Winds as well during that morning, so I really had to dig in and stabilize my D4 and it’s tripod with volcanic rocks for this shot, which was completely done manually (Transition and a slight interval ramp).
Her Majesty, our Galaxy’s Disk on it’s way over the Caldera the Taburiente – a beautiful Day-Night-Day transition (sped up 2x). The view from the Caldera is spectacular, and it takes a while to carry all the gear to the most inward Vista point of the Caldera. Also, my AFS’ 14-24/2.8 front lens was scratched during the Astromaster week, you see some scratch marks on the sequence in the Morning and Evening at high apertures. Done with GBTimelapse on Autopilot, unattended.
From Pico de la Cruz one has a beautiful view and option for Pans to the Caldera Side and back. Also it’s one of the best places to see the “Belt of Venus” or “Earth Shadow” rise up from the Horizon and to see the Shadow of the Island crawl over the Sea of Clouds merging into the Earth Shadow. In the Alps the Earth Shadow is also called “Alpenglühen” or “Alpenglow”. I love this place, but it’s often very cold and windy.
Naturally, it seems my journey to this beautiful Island will never be finished. There is always that one scene and others, high up somewhere on the Volcanoes, I could not image yet. So of course, there will be a new Version of “Island in the Sky” coming sooner or later, haha. Until then, I hope you enjoy this new edit of “Island in the Sky” as much as I do.
Thanks for watching and clear Skies!