The making of the Northern Lights film

Jason // May 17 // 42 Comments

I wasn’t expecting that at all! Usually I scan the northern sky for a slight green smudge, probably mostly hidden by clouds. But on this night the horizon was clear with the only colour being residual sunset.

A quick glance above my head revealed what I was looking for. The Northern Lights glowed and pulsed like some cosmic opening, raining down magenta beams that morphed into green streaks. I’d never seen anything quite like it and to be honest probably never will again.

Deciding to decamp to a nearby dark landscape I left the Morecambe promenade and headed for New Biggin Fell, a nearby limestone fell that held promise of a better connection.

Arriving shortly before midnight I donned my headtorch and made my way across the upland watching the huge being in the sky throb and shapeshift. I grabbed a few shots and then set my camera up for a timelapse movie which I hoped would enable me to share the experience with anyone who missed the event.

Already the colours were fading as the early hours of the morning approached but I managed to catch the character of the night show that danced above the craggy hawthorns and limestone bluffs.

The air was electric, I had a real sense of company up on the hill. I felt a deep edginess and unease as I stood for over an hour immersing in the energy of the Aurora, quite aware of some unearthly presence around me.

As the last lights of the show disappeared I made my way back home to dream fitfully of otherworldly realms.

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  • Blissfully divine – a beautiful experience to see and feel a part of, with gratitude to you Jason for sharing.

  • I agree with Catherine – thank you so much for sharing this beauty, Jason. I sat, hopefully, in my garden on that so-clear night for hours, but I’m just too far south, being on the Sussex coast. Strangely, the night was silent although I am surrounded by fields and woodland. However, my wisteria filled my garden with a divine perfume even in the dark 😊

  • 😃 Wonderful Jason. Unfortunately l missed it. It was slightly cloudy at home and l was so tired after doing some hard work l had to go to bed early. I wasn’t too disappointed because l don’t think the sun has finished with us yet. 🌞 It is very active as it comes to the end of this cycle. Keep your eyes on the app. Amber alerts today.

    I am helping to dig a Neolithic/ Bronze Age ring ditch at Aspull. I wonder what prehistoric people would have thought of this spectacle of nature.
    You might be interested in reading about it as it is not far from your homeland.

    • What an interesting project. Great to see this going on so close to home. Thank you for sharing this, and for your kind comment.

  • Wow, amazing footage of the special show.
    As I commented elsewhere, facebook I think, we are all made of stardust.
    Staring up in awe at multicoloured stardust 😊

  • Thank you SO much! I sadly went to bed thinking too much light pollution, so this is absolutely wonderful to see! 🙏 Totally ethereal!

  • Thank you so much for posting your magnificent photos of the Aurora Borealis Jason they are truly amazing and I feel very fortunate to have shared is some small way in your experience. Marj Morrison 💖

    • You are welcome Marj. As always my intention with Earthlight is to share what I see, feel and hear when out on the land.

  • Totally amazing Jason, thank you so much for sharing this beautiful and spectacular event. The sounds you matched with the video were perfect!

    • Thank you Glynis. I appreciate your comment on the audio too, it’s always a tough call trying to match this to the video.

  • I too missed it here in Germany, I had sadly been unaware it was happening…but it is so wonderful to see it here in your amazing film and photo footage. Thank you. Wow! 🙏

    • Thank you Michelle, I was surprised by the intensity of it. Normally it shows as a very feint green smudge on the northern horizon but on this night it was directly overhead and pulsing with colour.

  • Wow that’s incredible! So glad that you got to experience & film it for others to see, I was in the Peak District at the time & saw a white haze but no colour so really pleased to receive this.
    Thanks Jason.

  • Thank you so much for this beautiful little film. I somehow missed it, so am grateful for your stunning capture.

  • Beautiful film Jason It was such a magical experience to see. I watched it in our garden here in the heart of Ireland where we have great dark skies, in complete awe. I felt so connected, inspired and privileged to see it.

    • Wasn’t it beautiful Aisling! I doubt I’ll ever see anything like it again and am pleased I caught it on camera too.

  • Jason these photos and your film are stunningly beautiful once again. I’m so grateful to you as we missed this as we were in Cornwall at the time with very cloudy skies and I was so disappointed. Huge thanks 🙏 for sharing. I still hope one day to see this spectacular phenomenon. I’m inspired to make a textile picture reflecting the sumptuous colours in your pictures. Many thanks indeed for sharing the beauty.

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    About the Author Jason

    Jason follows his lifelong vocation as a countryside photographer who tries to catch the spirit of the places he visits. After decades working as a professional editorial photographer he now focuses much of his time on conceptual fine art photography, visual storytelling and in aiding others to follow their creative calling.