top of page
  • by Ashleigh Garwood

DOMINIC BOUDREAULT: Master of the timelapse

Dominic Boudreault describes himself as a motion photographer. Despite the fact he has no formal photography education he is considered one of the masters of the timelapse photography genre.

His monumental work The City Limits is a testament to his skill and vision as a photographer and he has received due recognition. The work went viral, and hundreds upon hundreds of comments on his Vimeo account thank him for the work. Other impressive media mentions of note include appearances on MSNBC’s Today Show and CBC Radio.

Boudreault not only utilizes the availability of new technologies for his self-initiated work, but also uses the forum of social media and social sharing sites to further his photographic career. His work gives new direction to what is possible with photography. Boudreault was born and raised in Quebec City. It was in the Quebec landscapes that he discovered his passion for imagery and photography. He was drawn to time-lapse photography because he felt it was the most accurate way for him to present his vision. His work shifts the nature of photography, as he aims to capture the pace, movement, and relationships of a city, rather than freezing the city in a specific moment.

What led you to explore motion photography?

With time-lapse photography you often see things that you don’t usually see with the naked eye — for example, the stars moving and the speed in which we live. From the top of buildings, as you see the numerous streets and heavy circulation, it can look a lot like a maze of ants. The first time I realized that, I was completely blown away. Since that first moment when I finished editing a clip, I was hooked. I needed to see more.

Do you see motion photography as a relatively new genre?

Yes, certainly. It has become a lot more popular in the last few years, first and foremost because of the lower cost of camera and computer equipment. Time lapse has existed for a long time but was not accessible to most hobbyists. But now, everybody with a digital camera and basic computer knowledge can attempt to make a time-lapse sequence. Also, I think that there is masterful work in time-lapse photography that has been done in recent years, like parts of the movie Baraka for example. I think it has inspired a lot of people, myself included.

Dominic Boudreault

What is the background to City Limits?

With The City Limits time-lapse video, I was trying to show the duality between city and nature. Time lapse was the perfect medium for this project. It allowed me to show cities like never before. I originally planned to visit one or two cities in Canada and in the northeast of the USA, but it quickly snowballed and I was finding myself completely obsessed by the project. I spent a lot of time doing research for this project and I think it helped me achieve my vision. I shot a lot at night because I find that cities become more alive, more magical at night. There are also a lot of bridges and water in the video. Bridges connect people to the big cities. Water shows that nature is a part of the big man-made cities. Everything is connected. That’s a part o