An image titled, “Tornadic Supercell over Goldenrod” won a stills competition hosted by the London-based Royal Photographic Society (RPS) this week. What makes it unique is the image is actually a still pulled from the 16K short film “Prairie Wind,” shot and directed by StormStock founder and cinematographer Martin Lisius.
Lisius and his team of shooters were able to capture Hurricane Harvey from various locations. The team photographed intense wind and rain, aerials of submerged homes and cars, flood rescues and evacuations, interviews with victims, and relief efforts.
StormStock includes the only HD collection of Hurricane Katrina making landfall, shot by Lisius, and significant material from other named storms such as Sandy, Ike and Matthew. This summer, Lisius captured a series of photogenic tornadoes in Iowa on DCI 4K.
“We were able to capture the usual things like horizontal rain, trees bending over and debris flying through the air and scraping across the ground,” Lisius said. “But the most amazing scene we encountered was in Moss Point, Mississippi where we came upon a parking lot that was flooding with storm surge and covering cars...
"To do what I do, I have to not only be a skilled cinematographer, but I have to understand how to operate in and around storms safely. That's a pretty unique set of skills," Lisius said. Lisius has taken what he's learned about extreme weather and shared it with the public in a book titled, The Ultimate Severe Weather Safety Guide.
Last week, it was business as usual as he followed major Hurricane Matthew along the Florida coast, bracing against 90 mph winds, and enduring stinging, horizontal rain. "Yes, the rain actually stings if you aren't completely covered," Lisius said.
"I've only seen a handful of mega-supercells in my 30 years of photographing storms," said Lisius who does his own forecasting. "The Sand Hills storm was rotating hard and was almost fully on the ground at times. It was like a massive vacuum cleaner and a tennis ball size ice machine maker rolled into one...
Prairie Pictures' StormStock has been selected as a nominee for the 2016 Footage Library of the Year Award by FOCAL International, The Federation of Commercial Audiovisual Libraries International, a professional not-for-profit trade association based in London. The award is presented to a FOCAL member organization which, in the past year, has introduced a new service, initiative or innovation.
StormStock provided over 5 minutes of its spectacular imagery including tornadoes, hurricanes, lightning, and blizzards. Much of the material was shot by founder Martin Lisius on Super 35mm and HD, including dramatic views of rotating supercell thunderstorms and twisters racing across the US Great Plains.