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Stephen Locke Earns Vimeo Staff Pick With Arcus Cloud Kansas City

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I shot this movie in Kansas City friday night August 29. After 24 hours in post production I uploaded it to Vimeo the following night. Two days later its gathered 65,000 views and named a Vimeo Staff Pick. The banner reads Carefully Curated, Hand Picked with Love in New York City- It feels pleasant to have my work recognized in this manner! Supercell time lapse cinematography is what I do and love. I will be releasing many more of  these over the coming months as I finish post production from the 2014 storm season. Watch movie below  ↓

Please leave comments below.

Cindy Luby - September 2, 2014 - 10:27 pm

wow .. no words.. :)…lc

Kevin DeLaney - September 2, 2014 - 10:28 pm


Eric Negrete - September 2, 2014 - 11:24 pm

Beautiful footage, Stephen.

Chris Koons - September 3, 2014 - 12:10 am

Wow! Scary cloud. beautiful footage!

LaDonna Myers - September 3, 2014 - 12:28 am

Awe inspiring. I absolutely love looking at storms. This was a whole new look seeing the tentacles reaching like they were grabbing for something and Downtown KS as the back drop was beautiful

Danys Betts - September 3, 2014 - 1:00 am

Love it. Youtube it so we can share it please. It is so beautiful

Judy Gray VanEgdom - September 3, 2014 - 2:22 am

I haven’t lived in KC since l968 but I remember the view from the Liberty Memorial towards Union Station so well. Also the Western Auto sign that’s looked the same since before I was born. My parents told me it was like that when they worked there in the 1930′s. I hope to visit the Liberty Memorial at my high school reunion in a month.

Cara Myers - September 3, 2014 - 2:44 am

You capture the majesty and power of nature so masterfully!

Ben Weddle - September 3, 2014 - 4:06 am

Impressive and well executed.

Lena Jackson - September 3, 2014 - 5:01 am

Wow that’s so beautiful, no wonder it got so many views, and voted Vimeo Staff Pick, you are truly one of the best photographers I’ve ever seen, good luck on future projects, I’ll be waiting to see them

Lena Jackson - September 3, 2014 - 5:10 am

Wow just beautiful Stephen

Kenny Graves - September 3, 2014 - 10:00 am

Congrats Stephen. Have been admiring your work for a couple of years now.

Candi Ayres Phillips - September 3, 2014 - 9:39 pm

How were you at the right place at the right time yet again? Your intuition and knowledge is to our benefit, Stephen. You have created the most awesome, terrifyingly beautiful videos and photographs I’ve ever seen. Honestly, it’s only a matter of time until a national news program does a story about you.

Jane Todd - September 4, 2014 - 7:05 pm

Utterly fantastic, bravo!

Susan Carleton - September 15, 2014 - 3:45 am

What beautiful photography!

Charlene Hotzel - September 21, 2014 - 8:26 pm

Beautiful. Can I download it.


Revisiting the Mapleton, Iowa Tornado

I was in the town Mapleton, Iowa as it was hit by a tornado April 9, 2011. Today I retrieved some archived Mesoscale Analysis charts just to refresh my memory of what the Mapleton day looked like from a meteorological standpoint. Thought I’d post them here along with some screen grabs and the complete video below.



The Mapleton tornado developing overhead southwest of my position.


This is the view out my windshield as the tornado is entering town and headed directly toward me.


This is the view over my left shoulder as I escape to the west.


The tornado was very dirty and appeared to be getting larger!

Stephen Locke

I reposition well to the west as I am concerned the tornado track will hook left as they often do. The kidney shaped damage path above confirms the left hook and you can see the tornado struck my original position.


I end the chase and return to town to see if  I can be of any assistance. The engine was still running in this GMC truck but I could not find the driver.

Watch the entire video above.

Do you have any memories of the Mapleton tornado? If so, please leave comments below!

Sam DeMaranville - April 9, 2014 - 1:34 am

Excellent footage. Really one of the best I have seen as far as a complete follow up after the fact. A few years ago I spent time as a volunteer in Greensboro Kansas. I wasnt there until about a week after, but took many tapes of footage of the cleanup process….keep up the good work, and most of all be safe.Thanks

Molly Buettner Petersen - April 9, 2014 - 3:28 am

I remember the evening of the Mapleton tornado well! I live 13 miles outside of town and had worked outside all day. Nearby Danbury had set off their tornado sirens and I got my camera out. Tornado sirens go off often enough around here that I wasn’t too worried. I am on the Danbury Ambulance and couldn’t believe it when my pager went off… They named so many surrounding towns all in one page that it seemed they were listing every single town in Woodbury County (the county Danbury is in). All were to report to Mapleton for a direct hit by a tornado. My heart sank for Mapleton as I worried about all of my friends and students there. (I graduated from high school in Mapleton and was in my 10th year of teaching in the district.) The response from local communities’ ambulance crews, Urban Search & Rescue team members and their dogs, county emergency disaster experts, law enforcement, and so many others was AMAZING. For the amount of damage done and considering the fact that the high school was putting on a play when the tornado hit, it was a miracle that there were so few injuries and no deaths. I spent HOURS in Mapleton over the next few days doing so many different things… helping the few patients we did have, delivering coffee and donuts or lunch or cold water to the residents that couldn’t get downtown to eat, directing an overwhelming amount of traffic during the clean-up in the days that followed (because the 1 stoplight in town wasn’t working after the tornado), helping volunteers register themselves and the equipment they brought with them, helping residents clean up their yards (I helped one gal in particular and still often think of her, wondering how she is doing & if she got everything she needed), and listening as people told and retold their stories. My elementary students will still talk about this day. I took many pictures of the events that unfolded because I knew that people would eventually have time to sit down and remember what happened. The days would likely be a blur and many may want to see photos of what other areas of town looked like that they couldn’t get to. Or they may want pictures of what their homes and businesses looked like. As I look back through those pictures I am amazed at them every time. Mapleton’s businesses and citizens have worked hard and should be proud of what they have done over the last few years. The town is looking great!
I also remember the first time I saw your video, Stephen. It is the best quality video I have seen of the tornado and the fact that you came back to check on people and help was great!! Thanks for sharing this post!

Karl Mccall - April 9, 2014 - 4:14 am

I use to live in Mapleton my house was still standing but my neighbors house was flatten next to it

Sherry Welte - April 9, 2014 - 5:24 am

I was one of Danbury Ambulance’s crew that night and we were the first Ambulance to arrive(Mapleton’s Ambulances were trapped in their shed with debris) I remember it was so very dark and we worked our way to main street,stopping and 2 of us getting out to move large chunks of brick and large pieces of wood just so we could get to the staging area we were called to help one patient and had a terrible time getting to his house thru several large trees in the street Using flashlight it was still very hard to find patient and get thru debris broken glass everywhere We stayed in staging for hours as the fire dept and cops searches every house We treated a few minor injuries & waited to be of assistance to anyone Finally after all buildings were cleared we were allowed to go home around 4:30 AM. Very Long stressful night,glad we could help & that no lives were lost. God stood over us that night & protected us!!!

Emily Peters - April 9, 2014 - 2:31 pm

I used to live in Mapleton and if we were still living in the same place, our house would have been flattened. We shoul have lost everything. I remember this day, when I learned there was a tornado in my hometown, my heart sunk. I phoned family as soon as I could. I visited a couple days after, it was juss a mess. I saw homes I hung out at as a teen, just gone. I will always love Mapleton. They’ve come a long way. <3

Chele Johannes Giger - April 9, 2014 - 5:24 pm

Daaaang I remember those tornados living in Iowa one haunts me to this day that hit Farley and almost sucked me right out my front door…so glad no casualties here!! Have me goose bumps and flash backs.

Haley Seboe - April 9, 2014 - 7:55 pm

My siblings and I were home alone when we heard the sirens go off. A few minutes later we lost power and so lost contact with my parents. We were in the basement with a mattress over us listening to the tornado outside. I will never forget climbing up the stairs and the view I saw from our window. We were at the edge of the damage, but even that was terrible.

Ashley Flammang Porter - April 9, 2014 - 9:38 pm

I remember running to the basement with my family as it hit our house

Joye Cates Thetford - January 21, 2015 - 4:14 pm

Tommy Thetforf

Bryan Tyler Peterson - January 22, 2015 - 3:03 am

I was a reserve deputy living in Mapleton that day. I remember good friends losing everything that day. I remember a truck driver hauling anhydrous coming into our house because he didn’t know what was happening. I remember the selfless act of Tony Davis. He lost his home and business but still was doing his duty as an officer. Most of all I remember to outpouring of help for the community from all over. It made me proud to be apart of it.


Suicide Hill

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Perhaps every town has a Suicide Hill. Large towns may have more than one! This one is located in the Brookside area of Kansas City. I love a snow day so felt compelled to join the fun after KC’s big snowfall on January 4, 2014. I once lived in Southern California and a Kansas City snow day on the hill reminds me of going to the beach! Temperature aside, the similarities are unmistakable so I added some surf guitar to my movie below.

Play Movie; Watch Suicide Hill by Stephen Locke

Have you ever boarded down Suicide Hill in Brookside? Does your hometown have a Suicide Hill?

Please leave comments below!

Rachel Ellyn - February 6, 2014 - 4:23 pm

Love this!

Linda Sheehan Smolensky - February 6, 2014 - 4:41 pm

Dallas has it’s very own Flagpole hill.

Anne Brewer Williams - February 6, 2014 - 5:31 pm

Wonderful as always!

Carol Page - February 6, 2014 - 10:06 pm

Very Cool! You never cease to amaze!

Michael B Savage - February 7, 2014 - 1:31 am

Last hill before the spillway at Wyco lake. Makes suicide look flat.

Adrienne @ Midwestern Belle - February 9, 2014 - 2:19 am

I grew up sledding on Suicide Hill with my family! Beautiful photos!


Kansas Rated In World’s Top Seven Places To Watch Sunsets


Green Landscapes rated Kansas in the top seven places in the world to view a sunset. Furthermore, Kansas was the only place in the U.S. selected!


I’ve certainly photographed my share of Kansas Sunsets. (purchase print)


Sunflowers, Northeast Kansas (purchase print)


Home, Kansas (purchase print)
Claflin, Kansa(purchase print)


Perhaps my favorite Kansas Sunset is a Supercell Sunset like this one in Kanarado, Kansas  (purchase print)

Here is a time lapse movie I made of a clearing storm at sunset north of Hays, Kansas.

 January 29 is Kansas Day. Celebrate natural Kansas, share this blog with friends!

As always, you comments are welcome below….

Winnie Root - January 29, 2014 - 8:06 am

Love the video. I miss Kansas so much. Thanks for posting!

Barbara Maat - January 29, 2014 - 5:25 pm

i love the ecstatic grasses and the heartbeat of wind in the stormlapse

Glenda Bookout Kelly - January 30, 2014 - 12:20 am

Beautiful pictures!!!

Carleta Strutt Imel - January 30, 2014 - 12:20 am

have always loved Kansas sunsets. Hearing the wind and the birds in the time lapse made me homesick for the wide open fields of western Kansas.

John Gladys Gilpin - January 30, 2014 - 12:26 am

That was a wonderful video

Norma Smiley - January 30, 2014 - 1:00 am

I miss Kansas:the sunset’s and the night star’s.beatiful.

Pam Minteer Holland - January 30, 2014 - 3:06 am

This is our Kansas also. A Very Beautiful Place.

Dena Weigel Bell - January 30, 2014 - 3:18 am

Totally agree! I go back just to see the sunsets, the big dome of a sky and the amazing amount of stars.

Jamey - January 30, 2014 - 5:09 am

Righteo! — I try to watch as many as I can.
Each one different.

Tom Day - January 30, 2014 - 3:08 pm

After leaving Kansas to go tothe “City” the sunsets weren’t nearly as nice.. now that I’m back I take in as many as possible. The sunrise is just as beautiful!

Lisa Walter Beran - January 30, 2014 - 4:42 pm

We went to New Mexico on vacation several years ago, a state known for it’s sunsets. We realized we could see better ones almost every night at home.

Amber Temple - January 30, 2014 - 4:51 pm

Beautiful photos, love my home state! What kind of camera and lens are you using?

Elizabeth Knaus - January 31, 2014 - 12:33 am

Thanks for sharing. Keep up the good work!

Beckie Harp Fuentes - January 31, 2014 - 1:24 am

I do miss the Kansas sunset, the starry sky nights, and the wind sliding through the wheat and corn. The sunrises are not bad either!

Ryan Bame - January 31, 2014 - 5:05 am

Haha that’s a laugh….

Bob Nolan - January 31, 2014 - 5:17 am

I live in eastern kansas and it is easy to take our sunsets for granted… But they are sssooobeautifulll. Rarely do I ever see the amazing colors of the clouds, sky, trees, and grasses entertwining as I see in a kansas sunset. Used togo pheasant and quail hunting in western kansas each november… didn’t come as much for the hunting as the magnificant night sky.. I swear you can read a book from the light of the milky way galaxy… Only time I’ve seen it’s equal was in colorado next to Pikes peak… Amazing…

Diane Crockett - January 31, 2014 - 5:36 am

Stephen, your ability to capture the raw beauty of Kansas is simply extraordinary!! Thank you so much!!!

Christina Melton - January 31, 2014 - 5:04 pm

We do have some beautiful sunsets and sunrises in Kansas.

PhilnCindy Boyd Bartko - January 31, 2014 - 10:33 pm

I love living in Kansas and seen some of the most beautiful sunsets! I’m glad Kansas made this list!

Carolyn Shank..Salina,Winter Texan - January 31, 2014 - 10:36 pm

I love these…Keep up the wonderful work!!!!!

Gary Jordan - February 1, 2014 - 12:24 am

I have been many places in this country and none more beautiful at sunset than right here in Kansas.

Brenda - February 1, 2014 - 1:47 am

My two year old has asked to watch the video at the bottom five times. It goes to show we are drawn to beauty.

Richard Whittaker - February 1, 2014 - 6:27 am

Agree that Kansas sunsets can be special…especially when the foreground is a Wheatfield with a light breeze and the sun reflecting off of that wheat just before harvest. Was born and raised about 20 miles S W of Wichita. Have lived in Colorado for almost 50 years and think it is a beautiful state but….my memories wander back to Kansas and those sunsets often.

Shirley Schwyhart - February 1, 2014 - 4:12 pm

WOW! just, WOW!

Shelley Reynolds Bailey - February 1, 2014 - 7:38 pm

I ALWAYS loved Kansas sunsets and thought they were incredible! I lived in Kansas for 35 years. I just assumed they were as beautiful every place else. Let me tell you, I lived in Colorado for nearly 2 years and in Oklahoma for over 5. NOTHING compares to the beautiful sunsets of Kansas.

Billy Bauer - February 2, 2014 - 5:59 am


Judy Anderson Clark - February 2, 2014 - 10:39 am

I think our license tags need to have beautiful sunsets on them, with wheat and sunflowers.

Ajr Buller - February 2, 2014 - 5:02 pm

I’ve lived in Kansas all of My life which is almost 57 years and I’ve loved everyday.. This state offers so much beauty people just need to take the time to appreciate it—it’s there if you look.

Joan Harker Todd - February 3, 2014 - 5:11 am

Several years ago we were coming home from a trip to Hawaii. Arriving back in KS in February is always a shock to your system after a stay on the Islands, but we saw the most beautiful sunset that rivaled any we’d seen on Maui!

Mark MacMillan - February 11, 2014 - 4:44 pm

These are spectacular. Thank you for sharing them. This reminds me of an evening I was on Rte. 50, just outside Holcomb, driving directly toward a 3-funnel tornado (2 in the air, but one touched down). Thankfully the storm was heading away from me and away from any homes. I pulled over, got out and watched the storm until it ended. Just then the sun was setting, and the colors were astoundingly beautiful. Wish I’d had a camera, or that you were there to photograph the scene.

Gary Schellhamer - March 9, 2014 - 3:25 pm

I was born and raised in western kansas. Now I live in west texas, apparently y’all haven’t seen a west, I say west texas sunset. None better.


How to Make Cultured Vegetables


Cultured (fermented) vegetables have become part of my daily diet. They are a living probiotic food that taste delicious and are fun to make.


I enjoy them as a side dish or garnish. Cultured vegetables aid digestion.

The video below is a tutorial on my process and includes instructions on how to make the airlocks lids pictured above. But airlocks are not necessary. The two small jars in the foreground are not using airlocks but the vegetables turned out fine!

Try making fermented vegetables. It’s really very easy and so good for you!

As always, leave comments below!

Leann L Gregorash - January 19, 2014 - 12:54 am

awesome i love stuff like this, thank you - January 19, 2014 - 1:48 pm

this is a test

Susan Gormley - January 19, 2014 - 2:02 pm

Is it good to lower the diabetic x2 looks lovely and I love bok Choy and nice to hear a voice behind a picture ,lovely and easy steps to do thank you it’s looks awesome…

Nanci Noble - January 19, 2014 - 2:17 pm

Interesting and I am going to try this!!!

Judy Klenk Crosbie - January 19, 2014 - 6:30 pm

Would you sell me a jar of veggies? Like to try first

Pat Berndt - January 21, 2014 - 6:35 pm

Can you post your sourdough bread recipe again? I heard it was fabulous!

P Berndt - January 21, 2014 - 6:37 pm

Can you post your sourdough bread recipe again? I heard it was fabulous!

Sarah Jane Hall - January 28, 2014 - 6:03 am

Take them to the symphony lol