New York photographer Richard Silver travels the world shooting well-known buildings over the course of a single sunset and splicing the pictures together to create a single image – a technique he describes as slicing time.
The project started in 2010 in New York, where Silver originally decided to photograph iconic buildings in the city with the intention of producing a book of individual photos chronicling the progression of the sun in the evening as the pages turned.
But he quickly realized that he wanted to try something more complicated, and find a way to capture the sunset in one final image. So he decided to slice up pictures of the same building at different times and with different light qualities to show the passing of the day from left to right.
Although the project started in New York, Silver is now a travel photographer, visiting 13 different countries last year. When he has chosen a place to visit, he then figures out which building is iconic for that location, making sure it is the quintessential building.
“I never really thought about the effect “time slicing” has on the architecture until I shot the Gateway to India in Mumbai. The light cast by the sunset on the Gateway was so linear to the structure that I needed to take extra photos so it would not interfere with what I was trying to accomplish. The vertical lines of sun, because of the other buildings, almost made some of my photos rectangular, with the lines of light going north to south and across the gateway.”
Silver finds shooting at sunset more enjoyable than sunrise. He tries to arrive at a location at least 45 minutes before the sun actually sets. Giving him time to pick his spot, set up the camera and fighting the crowds that might be there.
He takes around 40 to 60 images to process each shoot using around 36 in the finished Time Slice image. The weather also needs to be clear when he shoots, with no clouds and no rain as these elements tend to obscure the changing colours of the sky.
“I wish I’d figured this technique out before I went to Petra, Machu Picchu and Tokyo, amongst other places. I am dying to shoot the Eiffel Tower, which I feel was meant for this series, and I think I am heading to Moscow at the end of the month to shoot St. Basil’s and the Kremlin.”
Images by Richard Silver