Spanish photographer Xavi Bou uses an antique photo-technique to freeze birds in flight

(CNN)Xavi Bou does not photograph normal things.

Some of the Spaniard’s subjects look like sea creatures, raised from the deep and suspended into the evening sky. Others look like solid tornadoes, black, densely coiled and threatening. Some refuse description, other than to say they are altogether alien.
It might come as a surprise then to find Bou’s photographs aren’t just natural — they’re practically antique.
    Drawing on a technique developed in the mid-nineteenth century, Bou uses chronophotography to capture birds — from egrets to alpine swifts — in an otherworldly fashion.
    “[Chronophotography] captures movement in several frames,” he explains. “The idea is to take as many pictures as possible to freeze every single movement of the object in motion.”


    “I called the series ‘Ornitographies’ because for me it looks like drawings done by birds in the sky,” he explains. Not that the photographer expects us all to see the same.
    “From drawings to DNA, to fractals, wires [and] kites… it’s important that everyone find their own meaning. You can find a more scientific approach or more poetic — it’s up to you.”
    Bou’s ‘Ornitographies‘ continues, with the photographer planning to bring the series together into a book.


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