Afternoon Animation: Spend An Epic Evening At Joshua Tree Without Leaving Your Desk

Take a magical trip through the desert with this dazzling timelapse.

JOSHUA TREE JOURNEY 4: RUINS from Sunchaser Pictures.
For the last few years filmmaker Gavin Heffernan has been sneaking off to Joshua Tree National Park to capture a mesmerizing collection of shooting stars, blazzing sunsets, and all around gorgeous natural phenomenon. This week Heffernan released the fourth in his series of Joshua Tree films--timelapses showcasing the way the cosmos swirl and bend, almost invisible to the naked eye. 
This time around "storm fronts and star trails swirl over the ruins of the Lost Horse Gold Mine, scorched land from an epic fire, and other parts of the Indian Cove section of Joshua Tree,"explains Heffernan."As you can see in the first shots, there had definitely been a massive fire at some point. The mine itself was pretty surreal--such a bizarre sight set against the desolate desert! Though an epic storm system rolled over the skies for most of Night 1, the massive clouds parted in the early AM to reveal some incredible starscapes and a beautiful palette for star trails and other experimentation."
Above, let yourself be transported for an epic trip to the desert in under 5 minutes.
"You can see the giant shift from stormfront to starry skies play out in a 23 second uninterrupted shot 0:45-1:08," says Heffernan "taking place over four hours of continuous shooting and an entire battery from start to finish!"

The "star trails effect [was] created with the natural rotation of the earth's axis, including the final shot, which circles around the North Star, creating "vortex" effect seen."

While mentally we're already planning our trip to JTNP, to see more of Heffernan's  timelapses you can check out his Vimeo page here.  

Below, watch part 1-3 of Heffernan's desert journeys:

JOSHUA TREE JOURNEY 3: STORM from Sunchaser Pictures.
JOSHUA TREE JOURNEY 2 from Sunchaser Pictures.
JOSHUA TREE JOURNEY from Sunchaser Pictures.