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Polar Vortex at Niagara Falls

Cinematographer Stephen R. Powell has captured the magical nature of Niagara Falls during a time of year when most people in the area were hibernating – the spell of the Polar Vortex. We’ve seen photos and videos of Niagara Falls in the wintertime, with seemingly endless formations of ice and snow, glistening as the waters power their way through to the edge, and then downwards. But there’s something about the deadness of the surroundings in this case, juxtaposed against the turbulence of the waters.

“As a cinematographer I try to see the world in an emotional way,” said Powell. “What composition provokes a feeling. I try to balance movement and values, working with negative space. And in the case of filming Niagara Falls during a polar vortex trying to keep my fingers from freezing solid in near zero temperatures was something… different.”

The real beauty of Niagara Falls, and the region as a whole, is the transformational nature of the seasons. At the same time, when that rare polar vortex envelopes the region in frigid temperatures, it’s always good to have someone else capture the enchanting imagery at the foot of The Falls.

Side note: We featured another one of Powell’s videos called “Winter” back in 2017, which is worth another look. 

Written by queenseyes


Newell Nussbaumer is 'queenseyes' - Eyes of the Queen City and Founder of Buffalo Rising. Co-founder Elmwood Avenue Festival of the Arts. Co-founder Powder Keg Festival that built the world's largest ice maze (Guinness Book of World Records). Instigator behind Emerald Beach at the Erie Basin Marina. Co-created Flurrious! winter festival. Co-creator of Rusty Chain Beer. Instigator behind Saturday Artisan Market (SAM) at Canalside, Buffalo Porchfest, and Paint vs. Paint. Founder of The Peddler retro and vintage market on Elmwood. Instigator behind Liberty Hound @ Canalside. Throws The Witches Ball at Statler City, the Hertel Alley Street Art Festival, and The Flutterby Festival.

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