This was taken from my hotel window in Reykjavic, Iceland. 3300 shots at 2 second intervals. I added some panning and zoom with Adobe Premiere
This TV show used my time-lapse footage
@ 5:23- 5:33 and the credits @ 25:41 (Simon Wise)
This is my first Time lapse it shows various locations in Hampshire. It has a few very short scenes edited together. The panning was done in Adobe After effects and the titles in Premiere.
How to CREATE a timelapse video.
1. Choose your subject and location then get your gear ready.
2. Get the camera in position, I highly recommend using a tripod. Its a good idea to get one with a hook underneath as you can fill a bag with stones to make it stable in windy conditions. The main point is for your camera to be steady as any movement will create a shaky video.
3. Set your camera to manual. The key settings that should manual are white balance and focus. Also the light may change especially with outdoor shots so its a good idea to set to AP aperture priority. If you leave the camera in auto you may get light flicker or your camera may change focus.
4. Picture settings. I use jpg as you can get more photos on a card . 1920 x 1080 is the pixel ratio for HD video which is around 2mb per shot. I prefer to go bigger 3648 x 2048 which gives you the opportunity to add in some post production panning if needed. You can use the raw format which as it says on the tin is a raw image before your camera applies colour and light settings without compressing it. The down side of this is a larger file which will eat up space on your memory card. The upside is you can adjust the images without loss of quality.
5. Fire a few test shots to get the readings, adjust you aperture till you get a good shutter speed. The slower the shutter the smoother the video will be. You could add a neutral density filter to get a slower shutter speed in bright conditions.
A rough guide:shutters speeds
Busy street 1-2secs this should blur the fast movement
Slow clouds /100
Fast clouds /60
6. Set your intervalometer. This may depend on how fast your camera can process the pictures before its ready for the next shot ( if you’re shooting HDR that uses the camera to process the images, it can take 4 times longer). It’s a good idea to work out how long you want your film and how many pictures you want.
Example1, 2hrs @ 5sec interval = 720 shots played back at 24 fps = 30 secs of video.
Example 2, 4hrs @ 10sec interval = 1440 shots played back at 24 fps = 1 min of video.
Battery life is key for a constant shot. You can shoot until your batteries die then replace and shoot a different scene. You could make your final video by cutting lots of shorter scenes together.
7. Test the setup. I cannot stress this enough. Imagine taking 4 hours of shots and then finding out the settings were wrong.
8. Push start and wait.
9.You did it.!. Upload your photos. I create a seperate folder for the shots. I use adobe after effects but their are lots of others out there QuickTime pro, windows moviemaker, adobe premier pro, to name a few. I find adobe after effects perfect for the job as you can import all your shots straight into it as a video sequence. You can change the lighting add effects, titles, music, pan around the image if you want to and export it to pretty much any format you want. I love it.
10. Publish, show the world. Vimeo, YouTube
Canon powershot G12
Canon compatible Filter Adapter
Hoya polarising Filter
Camlink TPPRO24A Tripod
Aperture AP-TR1C Intervalometer
Sandisk Extreme Memory card
Spare battery (i use the original battery and a Duracell replacement )
The Canon 5D is the big daddy of the timelapse world as it has a full frame sensor and extremely good in low light. This camera will take astonishing pin sharp images with a good lens. If you are just starting out you can get a low cost DSLR or even a compact camera such as the Canon Powershot range. Most of the Canon Powershot range will accept an exterior intervalometer, however you can get software to install onto your camera such as Chdk. You may of noticed their is a bias towards Canon on this site, this is because it’s the only camera I have used for timelapse and nearly all of the best videos use Canon DSLR’s.
Canon compatible: Neewer, Hahnel Giga T Pro II Wireless, LCD Timer Remote switch , Canon TC 80N3 – Remote
Nikon compatible: NEEWER , Ex-Pro MC-DC2,Aputure, Phottix
Pentax compatible: Aputure
Sony compatible: Neewer
I would appreciate your experiences to improve this guide. So feel free to comment.