Shot in the summer of 2013, the film captures twilight masterpieces painted by fireflies — namely Photinus pyralis
, North America's most common species — in both Michigan and Missouri. Also known as "lightning bugs," fireflies aren't actually flies or true bugs, but beetles that make part of their abdomens glow with the enzyme luciferase
. They evolved this bioluminescence
mainly for mate selection, but it has also become an iconic summer spectacle for people around the world.
Brady got the idea for this video in 2012, then spent most of last summer "dedicated to photographing fireflies, because, well, they are just awesome," he writes on YouTube
. His friend Brandon McCoy also composed an original score for the project, adding to its ethereal feel. The video is a bit long at 4:48, but it's worth watching all the way through. Brady saves some of his best shots for the end, including a firefly-lit lake below star trails and the illusion of a "firefly planet" made with a polar panorama effect
"Nothing quite ends a hot and humid summer day like the blessing of the majestic fireflies," Brady writes on YouTube. "Lake of the Ozarks [Missouri] is a fantastic home to the creatures. Being out on the boat and watching as they light the treeline with their all-night disco party is just amazing."
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