Time-lapse shows St. Patrick’s Day tradition of turning the Chicago River green

by Gannon Burgett

posted Tuesday, March 17, 2015 at 3:34 PM EST


To honor St. Patrick’s Day, David Crewe of Phlearn decided to capture a time-lapse of the half-a-century-old tradition of turning the Chicago River green with the help of environmentally-friendly fluorescein dye.

Crewe, along with his Nikon D800 and 17–35mm f2.8 lens, sat atop the restaurant patio of the Chicago Trump Tower, capturing every step of the process. According to SLR Lounge, Crewe captured 1076 frames in total, all at 1/80th, f/11 and ISO 100. The thousand frames were eventually condensed down into the 35 second of video you see, below.

Limited in what he could bring with him, Crewe had to settle for shorter shutter speeds than what he’d like, but with the help of smoothing in post-production, the final product turned out well.

For those who have high-resolution displays and aren’t limited on bandwidth, Crewe uploaded the time-lapse in 4K, which can be accessed in the video’s playback settings.

Other gear used for the shoot included an eMotimo TB3 Pan Head and a Manfrotto 190CXPRO4 with a 468MGRC2 Ball Head attached. For more of Crewe’s work, you can find his YouTube channel, here.