Flo’s Cafe doesn’t need its neon to glow. It’ll find a way in just about any light. This one is definitely worth pulling up bigger to get the full effect!
One of the highlights of Cars Land is watching people as they ride Radiator Springs Racers. There’s so much life and exuberance in the thrill of the race. People laugh and smile. They shout and raise their hands. Perfect strangers wave to (or taunt) each other from cars that are neck and neck to the finish line.
It’s not about winning or losing as much as it’s about confronting the possibility of an outcome that could go either way. People avoid challenges every day. At Disney Parks, we find ourselves in an environment that comforts us enough to embrace a challenge and find out that the outcome, whatever it may be, is okay. Heck, we have fun simply trying. Don’t get me wrong. Winning is awesome. But you’ll never win if you never try.
Cars Land is not a great land because of its attractions. They’re fun, sure. But that’s not what draws many of us back again and again. Cars Land is a great land because of its atmosphere. It feels like it’s supposed to feel, from the impressive range down to the lines, finishes and textures of every detail. It’s the same way Cars (the film) feels like Route 66. I should know, having grown up just off of Route 66, where glass bottle sculptures and abandoned motels abound.
An atmosphere capable of immersing you completely is what has made Disneyland what it is for the past six decades and what Disney California Adventure was sorely in need of. Cars Land delivered, along with many of the other components of DCA’s makeover, having transported us to a time when the Mother Road was vibrant and full of life. The sun may have set on Route 66, but in Cars Land it still rises.
What you are about to see is not a sleight of hand or trick. It is a blend of film and photography known as a cinemagraph. You might consider it the grown-up version of the animated GIF, with a certain level of sophistication to its smooth animation in place of the usual stutter or jitter.
(Note: Because of the nature of these files, they may take a moment or two to load smoothly)
The first time we saw a cinemagraph we were mesmerized. And the second time. And the third… We knew we had to try it and that Disneyland presented a uniquely special setting for doing so. It’s one step closer to what we always strive to achieve with our pictures — the feeling of being there. Nearly two years later, here we are.
Like the title indicates, this is part 1. That means there will be much more to come (some of which has already been photographed and filmed all over Disneyland and DCA). The only limit to creating these dreamlike scenes is imagination. Two years will leave you with quite a backlog of ideas.
We call it imagination constipation and it’s time to get it out.
We hope these mini “motion” pictures instill in you the same feeling they do in us but we’d like to hear from you. Have you ever seen a cinemagraph before? What do you think of them? Let us know in the comments below!
If you enjoyed this post, please share it!
I hope you’re enjoying the new website. It was a labor of love and I think it’s a far better platform for displaying pictures. We’ve been working hard to fix formatting on all the content we imported over. Three years didn’t seem like much until it meant fixing links and the like for over 900 images. Speaking of which, I’ve redesigned our photo gallery hosted through SmugMug to match the site and added a link to the navigation bar for quick access. Of course, clicking on an image will take you there too. The choice is yours! Tomorrow, we’ll be making a couple of new pages live that we’ve been working on. Thanks so much for all the support!
The sunset in Cars Land was stunning the evening I took this picture. It’s kind of hard to go wrong in that atmosphere. The textures just seem to grab on to light and color as if their very lives depended on it.
Ornament Valley is one of the best places to dream. In this place, it’s difficult to imagine that there’s much not possible to people who don’t limit themselves or the scope of their dreams. It’s a choice that we’re all faced with every day – “Will I believe in myself and pursue what I’m passionate about?” For far too many of us the answer to that is “no” and we’re unhappy. More than unhappy we’re discontent. There’s a tremendous sense of accomplishment and self value when we let the desires of our hearts chart the course for our lives. That’s not to say that it’s easy because it’s not. It seems to me that just about any story I’ve ever heard where anyone accomplished anything worthwhile it took a whole lot of hard work and no small amount of courage or boldness. Sometimes difficulty is what keeps us from pursuing our passions because we fear risking failure. The problem is that life is constant risk. If you don’t risk failure, you risk regret; so we really can’t let the idea of risk hold us back because we’re surrounded by it whether we like it or not. Besides, you can pick yourself up after a failure but you can’t turn back time to fix a regret (Not even Cher could do that). Sometimes we get rundown amidst the hard work in pursuit of our dreams. It’s important in those times to surround ourselves with people who support us and things that inspire us so that we can be refreshed. Don’t give in to despair or disillusionment. Please never, ever give up.
Nothing says Happy Holidays like assorted filters and neon… to a car anyway.
Walking down Route 66 into Cars Land and seeing all of the car themed decorations is really inspiring. It instantly affirms the feeling that you really are in Radiator Springs and it’s no stretch of the imagination to picture Luigi and Guido hanging these tires for a whitewall Christmas.