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News & Insight

Fascinating Video Exposes Invisible Patterns in Daily Life

By Kishore Sawh on December 22nd 2013

I suppose that in the world of web browsing we have all come across some noteworthy videos.  The veritable cornucopia of media that is the internet has brought you the world via GoPro, cats doing anything, and Miley Cirus doing…well, whatever it is she does. No matter what you’ve seen though, Cy Kuckenbaker’s work is worthy of your attention. He’s made ‘documentaries’ the likes of which you’ve never seen before. Or perhaps you have, since his video compressing 4 hours of planes in the landing pattern at a San Diego airport into a single minute has been greeted with millions of views (video at bottom). This time, in one of his latest works, it’s cars. And it’s fascinating how it’s done. In the videos to follow we get to peek inside Kuckenbaker’s mind; how he thought of the projects, what he hopes to accomplish with them,  even a look at his system of workflow, and or course the finished products.

Kuckenbaker, already a recognized talent, displays why he’s an MoPA Fellow, and a Fulbright winner with aplomb. He proposes that “the nature of documentary tends to be, that you have a lot of raw material that has to be reduced and subtracted.” He goes on to tell that his new series, The San Diego Studies, is a different approach to the same idea. That the videos are designed to reveal typically unobservable patterns.

What I was trying to do was use a special effect, a visual effect, to tell a documentary story.

[REWIND: Filmmaker Catches Nissan’s Attention With Hilarious Viral Video!]

The method/system he uses is all his own; Chroma key can be likened to a green screen that’s substituted with something else. Cars were chosen for this project as a nod to West Coast culture, and in it, he re-organizes traffic according to their color. The numbers don’t change, but the order does, and patterns are revealed. Kuckenbaker is of the opinion that “the culture right now is orienting towards data,” and to try to find insight and information from said data. His work certainly is revealing akin to a moving info-graphic. It’s also compelling: Like a truly fine woman, it’ll hold your attention because it’ll make you think, all while you’re observing something beautiful.

Do you have any other ideas for Cy? What do you think this could be applied to? You can see more from Kuckenbaker on his website, Vimeo page, and be sure to follow him on twitter.

[Source: The Creators Project]

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A photographer and writer based in Miami, he can often be found at dog parks, and airports in London and Toronto. He is also a tremendous fan of flossing and the happiest guy around when the company’s good.

Q&A Discussions

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  1. Chuck Eggen

    I liked the planes video.

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  2. Will

    The car vid is perfect for OCD freaks like me! Awesome.

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