Storm Chaser Treks 20,000 Miles Capturing Lightning at 1,000 Frames Per Second

Storm Chasing Video Dustin Farrell

Photographer and filmmaker Dustin Farrell captures the thrill of chasing the storm in his 4K short film titled Transient. Shot in vivid detail with a hi-tech camera called the Phantom Flex4K, he showcases flashes of lightning in slow motion—1,000 frames per second, to be exact. The result is both terrifying and breathtaking as the bolts spiderweb across dramatic dark skies.

Footage of Transient was shot over the course of 30 days. Farrell traversed 20,000 miles around the U.S. in summer 2017 to find storms. It was an endeavor that was challenging, to say the least.“My respect and admiration for storm chasers became even stronger this year,” he writes. “This is one of the most difficult projects I have ever attempted in my career. On several occasions, I found myself uncomfortable either mentally or physically. There were at least 10 days where I returned home with my tail between my legs and nothing to show after a ten-hour chase and 500 miles.” Despite the low points, Farrell had high points, too. “There were also a couple of days that I drove home with an ear to ear smile that lasted for hours.”

From his summer travels and 10 terabytes of data, Farrell distilled it all into a 3-minute, 18-second video. It highlights the calamity that nature can bring while also demonstrating its duality; at times, the skies will be relatively calm, when a sudden burst will make the sky seem angry and unpredictable. What’s clear from Transient is that there is beauty—even among the chaos.

Photographer and filmmaker Dustin Farrell captures the thrill of chasing the storm in his short film, Transient.

Storm Chasing Video Dustin Farrell

Chasing the Storm

The footage was shot at 1,000 frames per second and shows lightning in slow motion.

Chasing the Storm

Storm Chaser Video Dustin Farrell

Storm Chaser Video Dustin Farrell

Watch the entire storm chasing video here:

Dustin Farrell: Website | Instagram | Facebook
h/t: [PetaPixel]

All GIFs via Dustin Farrell.

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Sara Barnes

Sara Barnes is a Staff Editor at My Modern Met, Manager of My Modern Met Store, and co-host of the My Modern Met Top Artist Podcast. As an illustrator and writer living in Seattle, she chronicles illustration, embroidery, and beyond through her blog Brown Paper Bag and Instagram @brwnpaperbag. She wrote a book about embroidery artist Sarah K. Benning titled 'Embroidered Life' that was published by Chronicle Books in 2019. Sara is a graduate of the Maryland Institute College of Art. She earned her BFA in Illustration in 2008 and MFA in Illustration Practice in 2013.
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