Mayo Day: Magical time-lapse sums up hundreds of kilometres of county coastline
"There were a lot of 5am starts," says the photographer behind a new piece of Mayo Day magic
How long is a piece of coastline?
In Mayo's case, it could be 543km, as the press release accompanying a dramatic new time-lapse video celebrating Mayo Day claims.
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Maybe it's a bit longer. Or shorter.
Either way, it's one of the finest stretches of the Wild Atlantic Way, as the three-minute string of images from photographer David Loftus highlights.
From the deep curve of Achill Island's Keem Bay to sandy beaches on the southwest coast; from the drumlins of Clew Bay to the Céide Fields and the raw beauty of Clare Island, the video highlights 32 discovery points along Mayo's section of the Wild Atlantic Way, in all manner of weather and mood.
The time-lapse is released to coincide with #MayoDay, a celebration of the county's culture, communities and "unquenchable spirit" now in its fifth year.
"There were a lot of 5am starts to get to locations before sunrise and capture the stunning light that only daybreak can bring," says Loftus, who created and edited thousands of images for the final time-lapse.
The project saw him give at least half-a-day to each of the 32 locations, he explains, with individual clips taking up to four hours to capture in real time.
"What was most special to me was the fact that I had the majority of these locations to myself while I was at them," he says.
"To stand at the top of 800-foot sea cliffs in North Mayo and feel like the only person in the world experiencing the beauty and power of Mother Nature, is just one of the memories I’ll remember for a lifetime.
"All of this is waiting for people to come and experience for themselves in Mayo."
The video is also accompanied by a unique soundtrack - a piece of original music specially composed by Mayo-born Lisa Canny.
Mayo.ie, the County Council's tourism and diaspora initiative, hopes the new video will draw tourists to a vibrant section of the Wild Atlantic Way - a marketing initiative that debuted around the same time as Mayo Day, in 2014.
Tourism is one of the biggest employment sectors in a county that introduced Ireland to the concept of greenways almost a decade ago, and which has been ahead of the curve in developing original, inspiring destination videos.
In 2017, a series of 'Wild Mayo' videos (above) featured GAA stars Aidan O'Shea, Lee Keegan and Colm Boyle togging out for tourism, as well as poetic portraits of triathlete Con Doherty and kite-surfer Francois Coloussi.
Read more:One man, 100,000 items: The small Mayo museum that packs a big punch