Category Archives: Projects

The Project

Sohdo Solaris, is a project that will try to capture each and every sunset of a full year. Ehden has been selected as the location due to the purity of its sky. This project will be a technical challenge, a challenge that will no longer matter once the delivered material will fulfill the expected artistry

The concept:
Multiple stationary and moving image capture apparati, that will only be trigger at periods circa sunset. The fixed view imagers will be synchronized with the main moving imager. The fixed view imagers will cover a relatively wide field of view. While the moving imager will be tracking the sun, capturing it in a very narrow angle of view and will be compensating with the solar movement through out the year. This will lead to daily sunset time lapses and infinite possibility when dealing with the whole year footages and stills.

The apparatus:
This project is unprecedented and will have a lot of customization for existing devices as well as the creation of non-existing devices.

The stationary: will consist of two high end Digital SLR, one with a wide angle lens, and another with a normal range lens.

The moving: this imaging system will be having a long telephoto lens (105-200mm range) and will be mounted on a custom made “star tracker” that will be following the sun through out the year.

These will be having a custom made “state-of-the-art” triggering mechanisms that will allow efficiency, and will reduce unneeded material.

All systems will be fully autonomous on power and will be left unattended most of the times, except in times of cyclic checks and eventual malfunctions.

It has to be built toughly in order to sustain various weather conditions.

The result:
at this very moment, (things may develop at a later stage) the main aim is to achieve video artworks involving the relative and absolute motion of the sun and its interaction with the ever changing sky.

Gear required:
1 moving system: mainly a high-end dslr, with a long telephoto lens
(low end dslr Nikon d7100, high end Nikon d810)
(low end lens 70-200 f4, high end 70-200 f2.8)
2 stationary systems: 2 high end dslr, one with a wide-angle lens, and one with normal lens
(low end dslr Nikon d7100, high end Nikon d810)

A heavy-duty star tracker that will be torn down and re-programmed to integrate with whole system.

Storage: the project might yield to around 1 million images, so storage and backup will be crucial.

Primary estimated cost for 1 camera project (moving) is 11.000 USD for the low end configuration.
For the high end configuration, involving 1 moving camera and two stationary camera 23.000 USD.
I will try to fund as much is I can, but having sponsors and funds by individuals will surely yield to major enhancements and more versatility

Sohdo dShaté

Following a very long experience in dealing with time interval photography. As well as a longer expertise in programming and modifying existing systems, long time lapses was a qualitative step that Alexy Frangieh took firmly.

Setbacks were broken progressively with a lot of designs and tests, until the workflow reached its first mature state in 2010. In 2011 the first stand-alone “Sohdo dShaté” (the Witness of Time in Syriac”) was being run, the capture process was now stable, but the logistics and management needed to be perfected.

Continue reading


Concept of the Project

HolcimAs an environment friendly move, Holcim Lebanon decided to engage in turning an exhausted quarry into a green area. The exhausted excavation site is around 60.000 sqm, located in Chekka North-Lebanon.
The project includes landscaping the site by creating multiple stone walls, applying plantable soil over what they call “Clinker”,  reducing the erosion by using “GeoTextile”.
The time span of the project is around 1 year, of which 6 months are for land works, wall building, soil distribution and plantation. The other phase is for monitoring the land behavior, the rain waters flows, and the plantations growth.
Documenting a similar project was a must. Holcim approached Alexy Frangieh to find a modern documentation solution with both visual and analytical value.holcim map
After extended talks, mounting 4 stationary cameras, for capturing long timelapse was the solution being discussed; the use of 24 megapixels DSLR cameras with relevant modifications for autonomy and endurance. This solution was important for showing the progress of work within one year, but was deficient regarding the need of higher detail due to the land size.
Another visual solution was reached using gigapixel immagery. It consisted of having 3 fixed viewpoints shot recurrently in a periodic fashion. That allowed matching the images over time and performing extreme zoom-ins.
A 27 gigapixel capture was conducted as a reference for the pre-modified land.
Later on,  for the periodic captures, each viewpoint is shot at 5 gigapixels, with a location matching accuracy of over 97%.
At each of the 3 viewpoints tripods are cast in concrete. On these tripods, a “Gigapan” motorized head is mounted, with a high-end flagship DSLR and with suitable optics. The motorized head helps capturing an array of highly zoomed pictures to be later on implemented, in a huge tile that will later on form a high-resolution wide-angle panorama.