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‘Fractal’ is a Timelapse That Shows the Fury of Supercell Thunderstorms


“Fractal” is a gorgeous new 3-minute-long time-lapse film by Chad Cowan, a Kansas-based photographer who has spent 10 years, 100,000+ miles, and tens of thousands of shutter clicks chasing and shooting storms across the Midwest. This “stormlapse” in particular captures the awe-inspiring beauty and fury of supercell thunderstorms.

Here’s what Cowan has to say about supercell thunderstorms:

The ingredient based explanation for supercell thunderstorms cites moisture, wind shear, instability and lift as the reasons for their formation. I prefer to focus on the big picture. Supercell thunderstorms are a manifestation of nature’s attempt to correct an extreme imbalance. The ever ongoing effort to reach equilibrium, or entropy, is what drives all of our weather, and the force with which the atmosphere tries to correct this imbalance is proportional to the gradient. In other words, the more extreme the imbalance, the more extreme the storm.

The photos you see in “Fractal” were captured over the past 6 years in locations ranging from Texas to North Dakota. In the beginning, Cowan simply wanted to personally observe and learn about these storms, but over time he became obsessed with capturing them on camera in the highest resolution possible (and to share them with the public).

You can find more of Cowan’s work on his website, Facebook, Twitter, Vimeo, and Instagram.

(via Chad Cowan via Colossal)