For the past two years, Omaha-based photographer Jesse Attanasio has been driving across the United States to capture some of the most beautiful storms and scenery America has to offer.
The result is Exhale, an incredibly beautiful 4K time-lapse that condenses into three minutes the imagery Attanasio has captured over the past two years.
To find out more about Attanasio’s workflow and process, we asked him a few questions regarding the most challenging aspects of the process and the gear he uses to capture the images. Below is our interview:
DIYP: What was the most challenging shot to take?
Attanasio: The hardest shots are definitely the storms. The storm in Chadron, Nebraska (at the 2 minute or so mark) was insane to shoot. I had no service nor any idea that the storm was even coming right at me. Keeping the exposure correct and cleaning the lens off of water between shots was maddening. I frantically grabbed my camera and sprinted a half mile back to my car as soon as the shot was over and just barely didn’t get pounded on by a downpour of hail. And the fun didn’t stop there because it was still a huge pain to get the timelapse to look correctly in post production, I’d say I spent at least a week total of adjusting frame by frame to balance the shot out.
DIYP: What did you did you for all those countless hours while the cameras were clicking?
Attanasio: I carry two cameras with me, both 6D’s and most of the time I will setup a camera and go take stills with the other until I decide if I need a second angle or not. No matter what when I get out of my car I have my headphones on and podcasts ready. Since I can’t necessarily wander off from my cameras, once I’m done exploring where I can and both cameras are rolling, and all of my behind the scenes shots from my iPhone are taken, I just sit back and listen to comedy podcasts.
DIYP: Why did you choose the 6D?
Attanasio: I chose the 6D because it was cheap, well relatively. I bought them both on eBay new but for under $1500 when they were still $1800 normally. The 6D is a workhorse of a timelapse camera, they are pretty durable, offer decent High ISO and since it is canon they can ramp bulb exposure in fine amounts for smooth sunset shots.
DIYP: Out of the bunch, what was the most useful lens, and why?
Attanasio: My rokinon 24mm is my favorite lens. It is sharp, great for astrophotography, very little distortion and has both manual aperture and focus which is a big plus for timelapse.
To further give a behind the scenes look of Exhale, Attanasio has created a companion website that breaks down almost every aspect you could as for, from every piece of gear used to every location shot at (and their time in the video). Additionally, he’s provided a huge collection of still image he shot with his secondary camera while the time-lapse images were being captured.