Winner - Los Angeles Independent Film Festival, Best Experimental/Travel/Time-Lapse Short, 2019 Woodbury Film Festival
Official Selection - 2019 Americana Film Fest, 2019 Utah Film Festival - Best Cinematography, Northeast Mountain Film Festival 2019
"Through these amazing Great Plains storms, we are able to see nature in its pristine form, untouched by man. It offers us a glimpse of nature as it once was, and inspires us to protect and preserve what remains".
- Martin Lisius, Director, "Prairie Wind"
Imagine standing on a grassy hill overlooking the prairie in western Nebraska. It’s early summer and you are surrounded by yellow fields of Goldenrod, and whipped by a warm wind from the east. A storm approaches from the west. It’s getting bigger and darker. Soon, the sky above you is filled with swirling black clouds and you are lifted upward, light as a feather, tossed by the storm.
I’m fortunate to have grown up on the Great Plains of America where I can touch the sky often. A storm there can transform you. It’s a conduit to God, an interaction with Wakinyan, the Lakota thunder spirit. While you are part of the storm, the bonds of earth are lifted, and you are free.
Finding new ways to convey this experience to others is important to me. In early 2018, I embarked on a mission to capture storms on the highest resolution motion picture format I could reasonably acquire, which for me was 16K (15,985 x 5792 pixels). It didn’t actually exist, so I had to create it. After much testing, I decided on using two 50MP cameras fixed to a custom-made mount. When you watch this film, you are actually watching two carefully stitched images. If you swear it’s just one image, then I have succeeded.
The score is by Benjamin Botkin. www.benbotkin.com
Tricia Brioux performs the voice of Mother Nature. www.triciasvoice.com
The words are by the naturalist John Muir, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Muir
A portion of the film’s 16K footage can be licensed exclusively through StormStock, www.stormstock.com
If you love amazing storms, book a storm chasing expedition with my company Tempest Tours, www.tempesttours.com
Format: 16K (15,985 x 5792) 2.76 “Panavision 70” utilizing two 50MP DSLR cameras. On-line: 8K UHD 2.39 (7680 x 3213) Rec. 2020.
See the raw footage at https://vimeo.com/306227036
Director’s notes: Shooting “Prairie Wind” required 4 months shooting 16K, and 3 months processing the clips. I drove 8,000 miles across six Great Plains states from March through July, 2018. Most were 16 hour work days. The project was time consuming with a cumbersome workflow. It required lots of hands-on, and many hours of computer processing. There are approximately 6100 stitched 16K images in the finished film. Only prime lenses were utilized, so the zooms you see are all digital. Each shot required two days to stitch, color, and render, if there were no alignment issues.
Download and sample some of the 16K images used in “Prairie Wind” https://we.tl/t-lSKE8dVRP6
Copyright Prairie Pictures, Inc.