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In an extended image sequence of an outdoor scene, one observes changes in color induced by variations in the spectral composition of daylight. This paper proposes a model for these temporal color changes and explores its use for the analysis of outdoor scenes from time-lapse video data. We show that the time-varying changes in direct sunlight and ambient skylight can be recovered with this model, and that an image sequence can be decomposed into two corresponding components. The decomposition provides access to both radiometric and geometric information about a scene, and we demonstrate how this can be exploited for a variety of visual tasks, including color-constancy, background subtraction, shadow detection, scene reconstruction, and camera geo-location.