I’ll Stop The World

Mathematician and photographer Graeme Taylor created this awesome video of people frozen in time at a train station by recording the high-speed train’s approach with a high frame rate camera and then slowing it down. It’s pretty cool stuff – you can see how as the train slows down the people begin to move at a more regular speed. Here’s a blurb from Graeme’s official site:

In all my slow-motion work so far, I’ve used a static camera to capture a high-speed event. But, I wondered, what would happen if the camera was the fast-moving object? For instance, if you use a 210fps camera at 35mph, on playback at 30fps it’ll seem to the observer that they’re moving at walking pace- but everything observed will be operating at 1/7th speed.

What I’d hoped to do was film the people on a railway platform from a train as it blasted past, but since the places they don’t stop at tend not to be listed in the timetables, this would be hard to co-ordinate. I figured that being at the very front of a fast train as it approached a stop would suffice; although the ‘frozen in time’ effect is less pronounced towards the end of the video, the platforms at non-stops tended to be mostly empty, so there’d be less to capture anyway. Helpfully, people don’t seem to move too much as their train arrives!

Man, I wanna play with a high frame rate camera! Gimme gimme gimme!


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