Soul-Stirring Infrared Time-Lapse Captures a Haunting Portrait of an Endangered Hawaiian Tree

The video above by photographer Gary Yost is remarkable for two reasons. The first is that it was shot in true infrared, with a camera that had a 650 nanometer conversion applied. The second, is that the haunting, stirring quality of the time-lapse serves a greater purpose than simply offering a novel look at the Hawaiian landscape.

The subjects of the video are skeletons of the endangered Māmane trees of Hawaii. “A powerful metaphor,” Yost says, “for how outsiders have crushed the native Hawaiian ecology.”

Set to an ancient Hawaiian chant, the shots are simple: well-composed images of the trees captured from below so that the their skeletal remains are juxtaposed against the ephemeral clouds above — wisps that are here one moment and gone the next.

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Then, at the end of the video, Yost combines time-lapse with infrared slow-motion video of a Hawaiian “akua” (or spirit) walking alongside one of the trees, further driving home his ecological point — it makes for an unsettling and poignant tribute.

Check out the video at the top to see it for yourself, and then head over to Yost’s website by clicking here if you’d like to explore more of his work.

  • Howard J.

    So instead of ‘Stunning’ we’re using ‘Soul Stirring’ now?

    Wasn’t there a post here on PetaPixel condemning titles like this?

  • Brendan James

    Next it’s gonna be “23 Soul Stirring Time-lapses, #7 Will Blow Your Mind”.

  • introvert

    HOW ANNOYING. this video made me want to pull my eyes and ears out! the “MUSIC” completely ruined the entire experience. load of crap.

  • Zos Xavius

    HOW ANNOYING. this comment made me want to pull my hair and and wisdom teeth out! The “WORTHLESS OPINION” completely ruined the entire experience. load of crap.

  • Arian Rassoul

    is infrared an ‘artistic’ choice? am not quite getting the point of shooting this in infrared.

  • slyman

    lol. tbh though, the title isn’t why i watched the video.

  • ajfudge

    I guess the use of infrared is supposed to make it ghostly or otherwordly. Thus, what would happen when the tree disappears completely and become a stuff of tales and memory.