Looks better over on the Vimeo page because they don’t allow HD streaming without a paid account.

Before watching the above video, here is a little background on the idea for those of you interested.

While traveling this past fall with YoungDoo we brought along a ton of cameras and used them all to the best of their ability. With my affinity to film I found myself focusing on shooting with my film cameras but unlike my trip to India I decided to make an extra effort to also get plenty of fun shots with my 5D as well. This amounted to collecting somewhere around 3000 photos in my Aperture library.

I am usually fairly conservative and more guarded with what work I share online these days, no real reason why other than I feel usually I don’t like to show all my cards at once you know? I do end up sharing my favorites all the time but there are often a lot of photos that lay by the wayside for my personal perusal or sharing with friends and family more so than sharing with the big dark scary internet.

That said I really wanted to have a little fun with the digital images taken while YoungDoo was visiting and turn them all into a stop animated video of sorts which is clearly not my idea but I knew it would be fun to try so I have been looking for ways to do this for a long time now. I went through iMovie and a number of demo’s for apps only to be disappointed but upon the opening of the Mac App Store I was pleasantly surprised to find a modestly priced app capable of doing what I needed and after having a go with the demo I jumped in and have finally made the video I set out to make.

The software is kind of tacky and the feature set is heavily limited but their target audience is not for tinkerers like myself so I don’t really mind. It does one thing and it did it well enough for my needs at the moment. For those of you curious the software is called Smoovie… Not a typo. It is actually a really efficient little app that handled the large amount of images thrown at it better than most I tried. The one compromise here was that the images are cropped to a 4:3 aspect ratio which I liked more than a 16:9 ratio of HD. I later added the exported animated movie into iMovie for titles and music and now have this video to share.

The end result ended up so fun for me to watch I knew I wanted to share it with everyone here as well. There are holes in the timeline from the trip as I did use a film camera a lot of the time but you still see a touch of everything we did together. I really hope YoungDoo lets me use all the photos she took on her camera as well and I we will have a short film on our hands hehe. It moves pretty quickly so don’t blink!

Now, as I mention on the Vimeo page for the video I thought that by sharing something like this I could give a closer look into the trip as well as showing everyone a small peak into my casual shooting habits such as how many photos of any given subject I take. Nearly all of these images are straight raw photos as all I did was an export of the entire trip project library. So, without further adieu I will leave you with over a month of photos condensed into four minutes of time at 12 frames a second set to the wonderful music of Shigeto (from his wonderful New Crossings EP). Enjoy!


  1. Ben E. - January 9, 2011 at 10:50 pm

    I’m a but stunned that you would share this, John! Only one or two people ever get to see my pre-edit photos. That takes a lot of confidence.

    I’m also surprised at how well exposed these shots were. You didn’t shoot in RAW and then tweak each one, did you? When I’m out shooting, a lot of my time is spent trying to decide how bright I want my final product to be. I end up taking several “well exposed” shots that end up being quite different. I’m sure such guesswork disappears with more experience, but your natural eye for colors is fairly impressive.

    Thanks for sharing! You’ve long been an inspiration and an influence on my own work.

  2. john - January 9, 2011 at 11:28 pm

    Thanks Ben. Yeah it makes me a little anxious letting it all hang out like this because its not only my photography but my life as well but hey, it’s all in good fun. Hopefully no one dissects it TOO much hehe.

    I did take take out a handful of photos that were more personal but I did leave in all of the junk too haha, photos full of sensor or lens dust from a smaller aperture or misfocused images or ones that just didn’t work. Most all of these have had no post work done to them. There are a handful with some retouching in there but just ones that I would randomly single out and mess with or the ones I have posted here or on flickr which had gone through a bit of retouching.

    I firmly believe digital photography largely hinges on a good original exposure and sharpness meaning capturing them through nice glass, and a good understanding of white balance and tint. As I start to write more articles here in the coming year I am sure I will focus some on digital technique as well as the things I try with film.

    Thanks for the support though and the comment, hope you continue to enjoy what I share!

  3. Neil - January 10, 2011 at 12:29 am

    Really enjoyed watching it and if these images are just you doing off the cuff fun shots with the 5D without even trying this makes me very angry! :D

    Wonderful stuff, thanks for sharing it.

  4. Chris - January 10, 2011 at 1:19 am

    John, what an amazing experience, after reading bits you posted here, and seeing a few photos it really was awesome watching the whole thing connected.


  5. Mike - January 10, 2011 at 7:57 am


    That’s amazing and inspiring. Thanks for sharing!

  6. Scott - January 10, 2011 at 1:17 pm

    beautiful stuff as always John. can’t wait to read about some of your techniques.


  7. Pete - January 10, 2011 at 5:38 pm

    Wow, that was… a real adventure! I too am amazed how you simply seem to be able to get the exposure and focus right on almost every shot. And how you find such great motives!

    Also, I’d not like to meet you in traffic seeing how many photos you seem to be taking behind the wheel ;)

  8. Neil - January 10, 2011 at 11:37 pm

    Also there are a few shots here I am really hoping you post as desktops, well a lot of them but a set in particular of some flowers against a sunset I think at about 0:43 – they’re amazing!

  9. Z Golez - February 3, 2011 at 9:36 am

    John, I have been an avid follower since your website started. Been amazed on the places you have been and the magnificent photos you have taken. Thanks you for taking us with you on your journeys.

    This video is really awe inspiring, as I saw the person/s behind the words and the photos. Sharing your life in the web nowadays is really scary, but I admire you for being brave and shared a small part of your life here. I am sure this has given a lot of people inspiration.

    Thank You for the inspiration.


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