Simpson Swiss Blog




Aleph - The Making of the Video

The Aleph was described by Jorge Luis Borges as a point that condenses cosmic space and time and said to be two to three centimetres in diameter.

It's a difficult concept to grasp and perhaps an even more difficult one to visualize, but that was the challenge set by the author, Paulo Coelho, on April 8th in a posting he made on his blog about the Aleph.

Paulo Coelho in his book O Aleph describes his own concept of time and space as the "personal love" he experienced during his recent Trans Siberian journey where time and space seemed to come together at one point.


The challenge was to produce a short video lasting less than 3 minutes that would visualize the Aleph as this concept of space and time in a single point.

Another difficulty in creating a video about the "Aleph" was not being able to read Paulo Coelho's book. At the time, his book was not yet published in many countries and not scheduled for publication in English for another 5 months.

So, not having any personal experience of the concept of the Aleph and not able to read a book by someone who had such an experience the challenge was to create a short video about it.

If that sounds like a difficult challenge, you'd be right.

In addition because the video was intended to be viewed by an international audience with different languages it was also stated that spoken or written words should not be used, except in the ending credits.


Jorge Luis Borges described the Aleph as a sphere in which all the elements known to man were condensed and could be seen. My interpretation of this was that the Aleph contained everything in the known universe from all human, animal, vegetable and minerals and all experiences both physical and spiritual combined over time into a single point.

The problem was how to visualize this concept of the Aleph and present it in a short video.

The result is what you see below

Aleph - the Video

Aleph - the Video (Playing time 2:27 minutes)

Facts about the Video
Number of images created for use in the video: 220
Number of images used to create animated rotating Orb: 230
Time to create animated rotating Orb: 24 hours
Time to create other visuals and special effects: 41 hours
Time to create music for sound track: 7 hours
Time to produce video suitable for the web: 2 hours

Tony Simpson - April 23, 2011