Thursday, 23 February 2012

Two-Headed Beauties & The Last Elder - The remote mountains at the heart of the Brazilian Pantanal

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At the heart of the greatest wetland on Earth lies a handful of remote mountains known as the Amolars. Here giant spiny sentinels stand guard over the parched ground while two-headed beauties dance in the warm breeze. 

A wooden shack at the foot of these mountains is home to an indigenous elder, the last of his tribe. His people may have almost gone but the petroglyphs carved by them will remain, adorning the rocky outcrops that glisten in the mid-day sun.

The elder told me that this mountain and the two-headed flowers were very special to his people. 

With his permission I climbed the mountain and saw them for myself. The pink and yellow heads are a burst of colour against the dry, brown earth. 

After thorough research I've now come to the conclusion that this is the very rare flower Hippeastrum belladonna. I took the photographs below. Can anyone confirm that I am correct? If it is then it was a real treat to see this rare species.

- Paul Williams

The Amolar Mountains


The Last Elder


The Ancestors Carvings
 
Turtles?

I've seen petroglyphs identical to these in the outback of Australia.

 
The Spiny Sentinels - Giant Cacti


The Two Headed Beauties - Hippeastrum belladonna






Friday, 17 February 2012

Dive into the wild with a puppet cat & magic car! Andy's Wild Adventures

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If you've got children then they're going to love this show. If you haven't then watch it anyway!


This year is the 50th anniversary of Children's Natural History Programming on the BBC. To celebrate CBeebies presenter Andy Day is literally diving into the BBC's extensive archive, using green-screen magic he takes viewers where no other wildlife presenter has been before.

By day Andy is a keeper at Pickles Animal Park but when he's finished his rounds he reports back to his curious sidekick Kip, a puppet cat that lives in their workshop and invents things. Inspired by Andy’s stories Kip builds a magic car to take them on wild adventures where they can find out more about animals in the wild. They hang out with mountain gorillas up in the treetops of Africa; dance with flamingoes in Kenya and snuggle up with Emperor penguins in Antarctica.

Watch on iPlayer (while it's available) or tune between 13th and 24th February on Cbeebies.

Join Andy for your own adventure in the Cbeebies game

Thursday, 16 February 2012

Cute Clouded Leopards & Deadly Tigers #WildIndia @SandeshKadur

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On NatGeo Wild (UK) this evening 7pm.

This evening I'll be watching 'Tiger Jungles' the second episode of Wild India, narrated by Sir David Attenborough. In this episode we're taken deep into the setting for Rudyard Kipling's 'The Jungle Book', these are rich humid forests where langur monkeys get high on fermented Mahua fruit, Bengal tigers combine stealth and power to kill with a single bite, and venomous snakes wait patiently in the undergrowth. Find out more about Wild India on NatGeotv.com

The first episode of Wild India was filmed by my good friend Sandesh Kadur. His beautiful imagery takes us to the enchanting plains south of the Himalayas - home of the magnificent Indian Elephant.  It paints a vivid picture of rural India, where the landscape is framed by red silk cotton trees and the plains are shaped by the Brahmaputra river. The smooth-coated otter swims in the silky waters and the endangered one-horned rhinoceros pounds the dusty plains. See here for the next broadcast

 Tiger: Photo: National Geographic


Clouded Leopard Rescue 

Thurs 23rd February, 9pm NatGeoWild (UK)
(Elsewhere it's called Return of the Clouded Leopards: NatGeo Asia 21st Feb 2012 8pm, NatGeo Australia 19th Feb 7:30pm).

 Photo by Sandesh Kadur: Clouded leopards can open their jaw wider than any other big cat and in relation to their skull size possess the largest canines among the Big Cat family. At 5 centimeters (2 inches) in length a full-grown clouded leopard’s canines are nearly the same size as a tigers’!

Sandesh Kadur filmed much of Wild India but in another beautiful film from the subcontinent we see him take center stage. In 'Clouded Leopard Rescue' he works with veterinarian Dr Bhaskar Choudhury to capture intimate moments as two orphaned clouded leopard cubs are rehabilitated and then returned to their natural jungle habitat. A year later, Sandesh reunites with the team to go in search of the cubs to see if they survived being back in the wild.

Sandesh has always been fascinated by the clouded leopard, and about seeing them in the wild he says...
"I knew my chances of seeing one was practically non-existent, but just knowing that somewhere in the jungles around me this cat prowls was enough to keep me excited and look for signs of its possible presence. I traveled all along the foothill forests of the Himalaya and although local people knew of the clouded leopard, finding one was nearly impossible..."

"I thought that the orphaned cubs would make a wonderful story as it was the closest I was getting to seeing a clouded leopard in the wild. So I rushed to the area and began documenting the process of rehabilitation. Initially the cubs were led on a long leash to get them used to their new home – the forested foothills of the Bhutan Himalaya.
Read more and see beautiful photographs of Runaa and Khota on Sandesh's photo-blog.

Orphan Cubs



First steps back in the wild



 Clouded Leopard Cub - Photo: Sandesh Kadur

Sunday, 12 February 2012

A lost rainforest in the worlds biggest cave - How to Grow a Planet - BBC Two

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An exclusive first hand account from director Nigel Walk


I've directed many of the Iain Stewart series and we always try to showcase something that’s never been seen before. For How Earth Made Us we faced incredible humidity and heat to film Cueva de los Cristales in Mexico. This time we were in Vietnam, facing a whole new set of challenges to film Hang son Doong - the biggest caves in the world. Just getting our team and equipment into the caves was an immense undertaking...

The caves are in central Vietnam near a town called Dong Hoi – which was frontier country during the Vietnam war. This is where the fighting was at its most intense. It was sobering to think that the town in which we landed had been obliterated 30 or so years ago. When it came to our trek through the jungle, we strictly followed our guides and porters to be sure that we didn’t encounter any unexploded mines. As if that wasn't dangerous enough, next we had to scale precipitous sharp rocks half way up a mountain. Suddenly we saw the tell-tale clouds of steam rising up out of the jungle – the mouth of the cave. The clouds are formed by the cool air of the cave causing the thick moisture-laden forest air to condense. 

But the hard work was only just beginning! From the foreboding cave entrance we vertically abseiled 100 metres into the pitch black,  slowly passing calcified flowstones called the Great Wall of Vietnam.

At the bottom we were greeted by deep thick mud - the drained base of a subterranean lake. Weird shapes loomed over us, I could barely see but it reminded me of the bizarre landscape at the beginning of the Alien movie. We continued along a giant V-shaped canyon of solid mud, It was a struggle to stay upright as frequently the ground gave way and plunged me into freezing water.

Moss-slick boulders, sharp rocks  and a 30-foot drop at the entrance to Son Doong. (© Carsten Peter/National Geographic)

 Nigel Walk abseiling down the Wall of Vietnam (Photo: Keith Partridge)

 Hang Song Doong, Calcite flowstones coat the Great Wall of Vietnam. (Photo Credit: ©Simon Reay)

 Slowly abseiling down the wall of Vietnam (© Carsten Peter/National Geographic)

Deep in mud at the bottom of the wall of Vietnam (© Carsten Peter/National Geographic)

 Strange shaped loomed around us as we headed deeper into the cave (© Carsten Peter/National Geographic)

A sculpted cavescape in Hang Son Doong. Ribs form as calcite-rich water overflows pools. (Photo Credit: © Carsten Peter/National Geographic)

The Garden of Edam

After hours of trekking through the dark and dirt we eventually saw a glimpse of what would be the fruits of our labour. Hidden at the heart of the cave system, a vast cavern has collapsed – and in a pool of light is a rainforest - 'The Garden of Edam'. It was completely astonishing to turn the corner and see green in the distance! 

In this oasis of green everything stretches upwards towards the light – trees are tall and spindly, leaves turn and face one direction… and even here, on the rainforest floor – are flowers. Streptocarpus, orchids, banana plants, and it's rich with animal life – insects and birds. It's a microcosm of the rainforest above.

Hang Song Doong, Son Trach, Bo Trach District, Vietnam. (©Simon Reay)

 Professor Iain Stewart in The Garden of Edam (Photo: Fraser Rice)


 Hang Song Doong, Vietnam. (©Simon Reay)

Rare cave pearls fill dried-out terrace pools near the Garden of Edam. These stone spheres formed drip by drip over the centuries as calcite crystals left behind by water layered themselves around grains of sand, enlarging over time. (Photo Credit: © Carsten Peter/National Geographic)

Working in the mud

The entrance to the Garden of Edam was to be our base for 4 nights and it was to be a real endurance exercise. The floor of the cave is covered in very fine and slightly caustic dust which acts more like cement. It wasn't long before everything got caked in mud and because it was the dry season there was no water to wash in. Each day started with us plastering our feet in cream and powder to prevent the onset of trenchfoot. And of course the filming equipment had to be kept meticulously clean.

The entrance to the Garden of Edam  (©Simon Reay)

Base camp at the entrance to the Garden of Edam (Photo: Nigel Walk)

 Dirty Work! (Photo: Nigel Walk)

The biggest caves in the world

The rainforest was the pinacle of what we wanted to film, but the Hang Son Doong caves were awe-inspiring in themselves, the very largest caverns in the world. Apparently, St Paul's Cathedral could fit comfortably inside. I wanted to show the scale of these caves – to illustrate the erosive force of water produced by the rainforest above. You can actually see vast distances inside with the naked eye – up to a mile or more if the light is right. The challenge was trying to make that visible on camera.

A half-mile block of 40-story buildings could fit inside this lit stretch of Hang Son Doong, which may be the world’s biggest subterranean passage. (Photo Credit: © Carsten Peter/National Geographic)

(© Carsten Peter/National Geographic)

   Abseiling over the forest (Photo Credit: © Carsten Peter/National Geographic)

Nigel with a block of ice having just emerged
One of the ways we tried to capture the sense of awe was to make the camera float through the immense space, flying past huge rocks or through tall spindly trees. We used a cable dolly – a long tension wire with a remote controlled set of wheels that glides along with the camera slung underneath. It took almost an hour to cross from one side of the Garden of Edam to another – but we managed to do 3 different cable dolly positions on our first day of filming plus all the pieces to camera – very satisfying shooting!

Next job was a top-shot of the forest and Iain. For cameraman Keith Partridge, it meant climbing 100m vertically up a free-floating rope – carrying his camera on his back!Ignore warning

We were very privileged to be able to film in these caves and the Vietnamese authorities kindly granted us access – we’re the first all British film crew to go inside. And of course we were indebted to our guides - a 5-strong British team led by Howard and Deb Limbert who have pioneered the exploration of the caves in central Vietnam over the last 20 years. We couldn’t have done it without you guys! Thank you!

 Our excellent caving team (Photo: Fraser Rice)

Watch a clip from the film



Flower Power - Sex, Flies & Videotape - How to Grow a Planet BBC Two

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BBC Two, Tues 14th February at 9pm on BBC 2.

This episode of 'How to grow a planet' was directed and produced by Nigel Walk, here he reveals some of the highlights.

Professor Iain Stewart with flowers by Table Mountain, South Africa (Photo: BBC)

The nuts & bolts of flower sex

As recently as 130 million years ago plant life was so limited in its evolutionary journey that the part of a plant we prize above all else – didn’t exist at all. It is the flower. What’s even more surprising is that in the geologically short time they've been around flowers have brought about the single most powerful transformation in our planet’s history. They kick started an explosion of diversification in the animal kingdom – that ultimately lead to us, humans.

It begins with a sexual revolution.

All organisms have to reproduce to survive – that’s what a flower is for. Iain begins by getting to grips with the nuts and bolts of plant sex – to discover why flowering plants were so much more successful than the ancient rulers of the plant kingdom – the conifers and ferns.

"The older ferns and conifers relied on something completely random - wind and water – its amazing they worked at all. But everything in history changed with flowers – they’re basically super-efficient sex organs! Then by forming all kinds of incredible partnerships with animals, flowers just rampantly take over the world, transforming the planet and helping steer evolution of animals as they go."- Nigel Walk, Director & Producer

A botanical time-capsule

Iain travels to the remote South Pacific Island of New Caledonia to track down the oldest surviving relatives of one of the first plants to evolve flowers… the incredibly rare Amborella trichopoda.

New Caledonia is a botanical time-capsule – like stepping back in time over 140 million years to a world before flowers even existed. This exotic island is so distant and cut off from the rest of the continents that many types of ancient plants still thrive where elsewhere they have died out… It’s the only place in the world Amborella grows in the wild.


The flowers of Amborella trichopoda, New Caledonia Wiki Source
"It was very touch and go whether we’d even find one of these rare plants" said Nigel "obviously they only flower for certain times of the year and we wanted to film them growing wild and not in a botanical garden. We had teams of botanists exploring the rainforest for us trying to track them down. We were on standby right up until the day we flew out."

Scientists still don’t know exactly how and why flowers appeared – there’s some evidence they share genes with fir cones, or evolved from adapted leaf structures. What's remarkable is that flower fossils all start appearing around the same time – 140 – 130 million years ago. Darwin called this an ‘abominable mystery’ – why did they suddenly appear, in a geological blink of an eye.

Seeds survive being shot

The appearance of all this 'flower power' is set in the context of an ancient planet that was being reshaped by geological forces. The ancient mega-continent of Pangaea was breaking up and new habitats and niches were being formed. Iain explores how flowering plants, perhaps above all plants, had a survival ‘toolkit’ that made them better adapted to colonise a changing planet.
To demonstrate just how tough some flowering plants can be Iain uses a shotgun to fire seeds through wood! Seeds are fantastic time capsules for plants. Many survive being eaten by animals, being buried or even burnt. They are able to lie dormant for many years, waiting until the conditions are favourable for the plants to grow.


Flies, Bees & Beetles - Harnessing the power of animals

Above all, the reason why flowers were so successful was because they harnessed animals to reproduce – flies, beetles, bees. It’s the biggest case of ‘I’ll scratch your back if you scratch mine’!

Bees are the most important flower pollinators, they evolved from carnivorous wasps that had turned their backs on meat in favour of pollen and nectar. As they evolved they became perfectly adapted to collect pollen from flowers. Their whole bodies became covered in hair, so that the pollen would stick when they landed on flowers. They developed special antennae to smell out nectar and their sophisticated compound eyes, each made up of up to 6000 tiny lenses, were prefect at spotting flowers. They can also see UV markings on plants - patterns that are indetectable to the human eye. 

"One of the hallmarks of the series, that we’ve not seen before is the specially shot HD microscopy. A lot of microscopy just looks like a sample in a lab, but in this series we’ve been able to shoot footage of a bee eye on a living bee, for example, or the inner workings of a living flower – to show spectacular colourful detail, to move around the plant in real time. It’s like the movie ‘Inner Space!"


Petals – adverts for flowers

Tuesday, 7 February 2012

How to Grow a Planet - forest in a cave, strange prehistoric plants & dinosaurs #TopTV

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"Best factual programme of the year so far!"

Following on from Earth: The Power of the Planet and How Earth Made Us, Professor Iain Stewart tells a stunning new story about our planet and reveals how some of the greatest changes to the Earth have been driven by plants. Watch episode one on BBC iPlayer (while it's available). Episode 2 is on BBC2 on 14th February.


Life from Light

Episode one 'Life from Light' opens with a glimpse of the most spectacular sequence in the series -  exploring the Han Son Doong caves of Vietnam (the complete sequence will feature in episode two). Three kilometers inside the cave system Iain discovers a lost rainforest that has grown where the roof has collapsed. Nothing could show more vividly the capacity for plants to colonise barren rock - just as they did when they first ventured on to land. "This rainforest exists because of one thing above all, something which has enabled plants to colonise almost everywhere on earth - light." 

The sun is a key character in this film and it stylishly appears throughout in the guise of lens-flares and solar timelapses. It's the perfect symbol of all life on Earth - a star 150 million kms away.

"Plants have this truly remarkable ability to harness energy from out of space, to produce food, it's this ability to eat the sun, to manufacture life from light, that's allowed plants to dominate the planet. This is the most important natural process on earth. It's how the plant kingdom has transformed a lifeless planet into a living world."

 Han Son Doong - a rainforest in a cave (Photo: Carsten Peter)
 Han Son Doong - a rainforest in a cave (Photo: Carsten Peter)

 Han Son Doong - a rainforest in a cave (Photo: Carsten Peter)

Beautifully produced

Like all of Iain's series (though I may be a little biased as I did work on How Earth Made Us), this is well produced, beautifully shot and effortlessly presented. Iain takes us on a thrilling adventure around the world, from South East Asia to the United States, Canada, Australia, South Africa and of course, his native land of Scotland. Complex concepts are made a real pleasure to grasp as Iain demonstrates them using eye-opening experiments, new scientific techniques, and superb graphics - including the best explanation for photosynthesis that I've ever seen on TV.

Although Professor Stewart is mostly known to academia as a seismologist (specialising in earthquakes), he embraces the subject of plants whole-heartedly. His real passion is how the Earth has evolved and changed over millennia, and what could have been more significant than the evolution of photosynthesis. You might say that Iain even puts his lungs into this series - spending two days locked in an airtight chamber full of plants to show the rate at which photosynthesis creates oxygen. 

Mouse in a box

The airtight chamber was built to be a powerful demonstration of how plants act as the lungs of planet Earth, providing all the oxygen that sustains us. It echoes the experiment first tried by the scientist Joseph Priestly in 1772. He showed that a mouse could survive in an airtight chamber full of plants, yet could only live a short time in a box without them. "This time, I was the mouse" said Iain when I caught up with him recently...

"When I went into the chamber they sucked out half the oxygen, so they could look at the effects of oxygen deficiency. It was like being suddenly stuck on the top of a very high mountain. I started to get altitude sickness - headache, everything was incredibly slow, I was trying to do tests... I was overly deliberate and taking ages."

"All I needed to do was rest, try to use less oxygen and make sure those plants kept on photosynthesising - I kept watering them just to be sure!"

"It was funny, but after that, I started to feel much more paternal toward them".

Man in a Box (Eden Project)

Ancient air and a chilli

Iain is as enthusiastic about sharing the secrets hidden in a lump of rock as he is when scaling giant trees or exploring deep caves. One rock in particular that got him really excited was a chunk of iron ore from a freshly blasted cliff in South Africa. Like a geological Nigella Lawson he relishes in the recipe for extracting oxygen from the ore before inhaling the fruits of his labour, air that was created by plant life two and a half billion years ago.

The height of his gastronomic revelations comes when he scoffs a whole chilli, to demonstrate how plants,like spiky cycads, built up resistance to predators - the most terrifying of all (if you're a plant) being the sauropod dinosaurs who he calls the 'ultimate salad predators'. Holding up the remains of the chili Iain says "forget about cycads, THAT could have brought down a 70 tonne sauropod!"

Other highlights making this programme 'not-to-be missed' include a rainforest inside a Vietnamese cave, plants talking to each other, macro-photography of leaf pores breathing, and a climb up the biggest organism on earth - the 85-metre-tall, 1500-year-old Giant sequoia in California. Epic!

If you need more of a reason to watch this episode then here's a few clips. Otherwise, go straight to iPlayer (while the programme is still available).

Breathing 2.5 Billion Year Old Oxygen



Life in an airtight chamber



The Prof vs The Chilli

When dinosaurs evolved they posed a threat to the plant kingdom. They were the biggest herbivores ever to live on land and many of them travelled in groups, stripping plants of their leaves. In response to herbivory, plants developed defences, the most obvious being thorns and spikes. They then went on to evolve chemical weapons, in the form of foul tasting chemicals and toxins.Chillis contain a chemical called capsaicin, which is essentially a toxin.



Monday, 6 February 2012

Skateboarding Dogs & Mastermind Goldfish - Super Smart Animals on BBC One

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Weds 8th & Thurs 9th February, BBC One 8pm


Intelligent animals! Talking, solving problems, feeling emotion? Surely the stuff of fiction.

In this two part series, Liz Bonnin (from BBC Bang Goes The Theory) reveals that animals possess qualities we once thought uniquely human – such as language, culture and consciousness. Liz gets creative with dolphins, shares a eureka moment with orangutans and defends the reputation of the human race when she goes head to head with a chimp genius in a test of maths and memory. Two of the highlights is sure to be John Humphries putting a goldfish through its paces on Mastermind and Tillman the skateboarding dog wowing crowds in Los Angeles.

Prepare to be amazed, entertained, and even outwitted by the world's Super Smart Animals.


Tillman the Skateboarding Dog  
 Goldie the Goldfish on Mastermind

Thursday, 2 February 2012

David Attenborough selects his desert island discs for 4th time.

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For the 70th anniversary edition of Desert Island Discs Kirsty Young invited Sir David Attenborough to make his fourth appearance on the show.  He was first invited to select which tracks he'd take to a desert island in 1957 by the original host Roy Plomley. Almost every track from his five appearances have been classical compositions including 'The Bell Bird' by Francisco Yglesia,  'The Fire Bird' by Igor Stravinsky and 'Spring Symphony' by Benjamin Britten, and surprisingly 'The Lord is my light' by Handel, chosen in 1979.

David Attenborough has seen more of the world than anyone else who has ever lived - he's visited the north and south poles and witnessed most of the life in-between - from the birds in the canopies of tropical rainforests to giant earthworms in Australia. But despite his extraordinary travels, there is one part of the globe that's eluded him. As a young man and a keen rock-climber, he yearned to conquer the highest peak in the world.

"I won't make it now - I won't make it to base camp now - but as a teenager, I thought that the only thing a red-blooded Englishman really should do was to climb Everest." - Sir David Attenborough.

Download the MP3 here
Listen to the show on the BBC iPlayer




 David Attenborough with Kirsty Young (BBC)

Sir David's 3rd appearance in 1998

In December 1998 David Attenborough made his third appearance on Desert Island Discs with Sue Lawley. As she introduced him "He brought the blue-footed booby into our sitting rooms, and revealed the secret lives of plants. But we remember him best caught in the embrace of a female gorilla."

Download the MP3 here
Listen to the show on the BBC iPlayer

Wednesday, 1 February 2012

Beautiful Planet - free to use space images from Nasa

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Whilst making 'How Earth Made Us' I needed to locate a wide range of satellite imagery. Fortunately all the images produced by Nasa are in the public domain and are free to use. They're also quick to access if you know where to look...

Blue Marble

If you want to add some global sparkle to your film then your first stop might be Blue Marble from Nasa. This is an archive of free-to-use extremely high resolution images of the Earth that most TV graphics companies use to generate the 'globes' used in TV programmes.

To view the full sized image of Blue Marble you'd need a monitor as big as your house (1 thousand million mpixels) so I think the quality is high enough for most TV purposes! However, you'll need some real hardware fire-power and photoshop 8 to even stand a chance of opening it. At full resolution you can zoom fairly well into specific regions and countries.

If you have a simple desktop then a safer bet might be to use the lower resolution versions (still 2km and 8km pixels). This resolution would still be good enough for creating wide 'locators' such as entire continents or countries but it will not allow you to zoom in closer.

You can check the resolution at this link (cloudless) and also here (including atmosphere/clouds).

Download the KML file
to allow you to view this as a live layer of satellite imagery on Google Earth.

ESDI

Another source for specific regions is the Earth Science data interface. if you have very specific requests then it might be worth contacting the archive staff as they are very helpful.



 The Blue Marble - used by most graphics companies to generate earth shots (Nasa)

Images of natural phenomenon

Modis

The 'Rapid response system' is used to view near-real time satellite imagery which is useful for navigating and downloading more localised and regional images, as well as images of natural phenomenon such as hurricanes, plankton blooms and dust clouds. You can search the Modis archives here.

Visible Earth

Similar to the Modis archive Visible Earth is a catalogue of NASA images and animations.

 Low pressure weather system showing the spin of the coriolis effect (Nasa)

 Plankton Bloom - coast of Patagonia (Nasa)

 Plankton Bloom in the Barents sea (Nasa)

Mount St Helens (Nasa)

 Himalayas (Nasa)

 Iceland (Nasa)

Photographs taken by astronauts

JSC Digital Image Collection has more than 9000 photos spanning the American space program. Although usually much lower resolution that the satellite imagery some of the photographs taken by astronauts can still be useful in creating aerial views of the planet.

I used this image of the Jet Stream in 'How Earth Made Us'. To turn it from a still image into a moving jet stream all I needed was a subtle bit of animation.

Jet Stream (Nasa)

Aurora borealis (Nasa)

Cleveland Volcano, Aleutian Islands (Nasa)

Bringing it to life

All it takes is a little 2D animation to bring some of these images alive, e.g. subtle swirls in a hurricane or plankton bloom. These effects can even be achieved in a simple editing package like final cut pro.


Hurricane Katrina from Visible Earth (Nasa)

Mixing aerials & satellite imagery

Watch the super pull-out from our presenter in the sequence below. To achieve this we used Nasa & EDSI satellite imagery and seamlessly mixed through from heli-gimble aerials.



Timelapse View from Space

Using free images you can create stunning sequences such as this one called a 'Time lapse view from space'. This was created using photographs taken by the crew of expeditions 28 and 29 onboard the International Space Station from August to October, 2011.

Earth | Time Lapse View from Space, Fly Over | NASA, ISS from Michael König on Vimeo.