Long Exposure Photos Capture A Year In A Single Frame

Long Exposure Photos Capture A Year In A Single Frame

Using an open shutter camera, a German photographer shows large spans of time and activity in one image.

Ryan Gerhardt
  • 14 december 2012

In today’s digital age, it takes fractions of a second to snap a picture and capture a moment. But that is too quick for photographer Michael Weseley.

The German-based artist likes to use extremely long exposures in his work, capturing a place over time rather than a place at a specific time. Extremely long exposure is no exaggeration either, as it takes him 2-3 years to take a single picture. The result, though, is hard to argue with.


Using special filters, small apertures, an open shutter camera, and a lot of patience, Weseley has been capturing urban development and building projects since the mid-1990s. By fitting years worth of visuals into a single frame, the creation is truly unique.

His latest project, ‘Open Shutter,’ captured the Museum of Modern Art’s extensive renovation in the early 2000s. While the thought of capturing a 2-3 year urban development project in a single photograph sounds mind-boggling, Weseley has set his sights even higher.

Weseley intends to hone the technique in order to create exposures that are even longer, ranging from 10-40 years in a single photograph. It’s difficult to wrap your head around an idea like that when so much can change in even 2-3 years.

Check out the gallery below for more amazing photographs, and visit his website to learn more.


Michael Weseley

Photos by Michael Weseley, via PetaPixel


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