Time Lapse Photo

Discussion in 'Picture Gallery' started by Bloo Ice, Sep 28, 2005.

  1. Bloo Ice macrumors regular

    Joined:
    May 4, 2005
    Location:
    Kansas
    #1
    Hi. I need to take a time-lapse photo of the night sky for astronomy class. Ugh, boring class. Anyway, for my quarter project, I need to have a before, time lapse, and after, to show the shift in the star's apparent position. I'm a point and shooter, and no better. What do you recommend I do for this? How do I do it? Thanks
     
  2. neildmitchell macrumors 6502a

    neildmitchell

    Joined:
    May 21, 2005
    #2
    Im not very wise, I am new to photography.
    I think what you need is a High Speed film (Suppsoedly good for low light), make sure your Apperature, is set to the most open it can be (2.0?)
    and set the apperature to manual, it stays open till you click the shutter button again. Youll probably need a minimum of 1.5 hours of open apperature. And of course make sure you have a reliable tripod. Check your camera manual, or swing by a local Pro photography store.
     
  3. Bloo Ice thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    May 4, 2005
    Location:
    Kansas
    #3
    Ok, no way this can be done with a digital camera? That and a cheap $10 35mm? camera is all I have...lol. How much would one that is able to do this run me? I'm not a photographer. I just need something to get this project done.
     
  4. Merf macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2004
    Location:
    Northern California
    #4
    What kind of camera do you have? digital wise. But from the sounds of it you just need a tri pod. Just put the camera on the tri pod set the camera to long exposure if you can. or if it has a manual setting put the seconds to like 5 and the apature to the lowest number possible like 3.5. Then put the camera on its timer 2 secends will do, point the camera at the portion of sky you want to photograph and click away. I don't know if the time is right so you will just have to experiment. Then just wait for a few hours and do it again.

    Merf
     
  5. katie ta achoo macrumors G3

    Joined:
    May 2, 2005
    #5
    hmm.. you could always set up a video pointing at it and speed it up in iMovie, pretend that's a time-lapse.

    In your digicam, isn't there an option in it somewhere about shutter time?
    I know that even in my cheapie cx7430, there's one.
     
  6. TheMonarch macrumors 65816

    TheMonarch

    Joined:
    May 6, 2005
    Location:
    Bay Area
    #6
    If you don't need to print the pictures or don't need a megapixel image, you could use any firewire DV camera, and a program called "iStopmotion" to capture frames at the desired time. Capturing a could hours of video would rape your HD, so I find this solution quite nice IMHO.
     
  7. tech4all macrumors 68040

    tech4all

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2004
    Location:
    NorCal
    #7
    I've done this before with my digital camera. I just set the aperture to it's biggest opening (low F-stop) and played around with the shutter speeds and set it on a tripod. Tip: before you release the shutter, try putting something such as your hand or a book (just something to completely cover the camera's view) in front of the camera lens. Press the shutter release then move the object away from the view of the lens. This way you can prevent any movement that may be caused when you press the shutter release which can show up on the picture since your doing a longer exposure.

    Another cool thing you could do, if the camera's shutter can stay open long enough, is to leave the shutter open long enough so that you will see "star trailing" which results in semi circular orbits that come from the star's movement across the sky. But the shutter has to be open for a while longer than a few seconds. Probably more like 10-30 mins depending on how much "trailing" you want.

    Lastly, pick an area of the sky that has the least amount of light pollution. That way you won't get any unwanted amplified lights, such as from street lights.
     
  8. MacFan782040 macrumors 6502a

    MacFan782040

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  9. katie ta achoo macrumors G3

    Joined:
    May 2, 2005
    #9
    Slacker. :)

    But... we all do it. Shhh...

    /I love you, sparknotes
     
  10. Bloo Ice thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    May 4, 2005
    Location:
    Kansas
    #10
    I guess I wasn't clear. I need to take a picture as a beginning, reference shot, and then a long 30 min one to get the star trails. Then, I need to take an end shot. I can get the beginning and ends, its the long one I don't know about. The digital camera is a cheap hp 635 [I think], don't have it with me. I'll be doing this out at the lake's observatory, where there isn't any light pollution. Does anyone have any experience with this camera? Is there a way to do it? Thanks for all your help so far!!
     
  11. Bloo Ice thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    May 4, 2005
    Location:
    Kansas
    #11
    Pffsh, I wish. I thought about it...but our astronomy teacher would know...freakin nerd studies the sky all the time. :D
     
  12. iGary Guest

    iGary

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    May 26, 2004
    Location:
    Randy's House
    #12
    Slowest ISO, highest F-Stop on a tripod, with a timer.
     
  13. iDM macrumors 6502a

    iDM

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2005
    Location:
    The Commonwealth of PA/The First State-DE
    #13
    I took some pictures when i was in Tanzania of all the different constellations and I did it with a Canon A40(2.0 MP) they turned out pretty good i left the shutter open to the maximum then set it on a rock facing up, and turn on the auto picture so that i wouldn't shake it when it began taking the picture.

    Also a word of caution i don't know where you live but there is this thing called Atmospheric Glow. It happens in metropolitan areas, from street lights, car lights, house lights etc and make it hard to see stars at night.

    Example: Pittsburgh i can't see sh** in Delaware by my house sometimes i think i can see every single star in the sky.....speaking of I miss Delaware.
    Anyway at least try to take it in an area where there is the least amount of light both on you(so your camera does not think there is light present and adjust to that) and so that you can see the stars better your self.

    Here is the picture I took you can see the southern cross in the bottom left
    Disclaimer: It was taken on a 2.0 MP Digital Camera not made for this stuff and most important I had no idea what i was doing
     

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  14. Bloo Ice thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    May 4, 2005
    Location:
    Kansas
    #14
    Ok. When I can find the camera and get it, I'll test it out on something. My next worry, getting the batteries to last 30 min. UNLESS.....someone lives near me and wants to help me out.... :rolleyes: lol. I'll also try to borrow a camera from a photographer. I know a few...see if they'll let me give it a whirl. Thanks
     
  15. rickvanr macrumors 68040

    rickvanr

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2002
    Location:
    Brockville
    #15
    What I do with my kodak camera is just set the exposure to the longest, and it has to be on a tripod.

    examples of mine;

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  16. 20rogersc macrumors 65816

    20rogersc

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2005
    Location:
    Brighton, UK
    #16
    The longest shutter speed on my Nikon is only about 15secs, and it's named 'Fireworks Mode'. A film camera would be a lot better for the long shot, due to it's easy way to change aperture.

    Hope this helps.

    ::20ROGERSC::
     
  17. Bloo Ice thread starter macrumors regular

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    May 4, 2005
    Location:
    Kansas
    #17
    Well, got the digital camera....and it's broken :mad: Dropped one too many times I guess. Anyhoo...if I just took a picture before hand, and a picture after with a regular cheap disposable, would it be possible to somehow MAKE a trail photograph with photoshop or something? I'm not experienced with that, so I don't know if it is or not. Thanks
     
  18. kiwi-in-uk macrumors 6502a

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    Sep 22, 2004
    Location:
    AU
    #18
    What's the $10 35mm?
    If you can keep the shutter open you might be better off using that.
     
  19. Abstract macrumors Penryn

    Abstract

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    Dec 27, 2002
    Location:
    Location Location Location
    #19
    I say point your camera at the stars, push the shutter button, and move your camera a liiiittle while taking a photo. You'll end up with a trail, although if you teacher asks you how you did it, you're fooked. :p

    If you want a more "controlled" way of doing this, put your camera on the ground so that the lens is pointing upwards. Set the camera so that it takes a photo 2/5/10 seconds after pushing the shutter button (depends on your settings). When your camera is taking your photo, drag your camera towards you a little. You won't cause too much blur in a direction you don't want. Remember, the blur should only be in one distinct direction. Since the camera is facing upwards at the time, your LCD may get badly scratched up, so put a cloth underneath. ;)

    Also, you want to make sure that the blur happens in a direction that makes sense to your astronomer. For example, if you take a photo of the big dipper, he will know exactly which way the blur would have occurred if you didn't cheat/fudge your photographs. :p

    Or like you said, borrow a camera from a photographer friend. THat's the easiest way.
     
  20. cgratti macrumors 6502a

    cgratti

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2004
    Location:
    Central Pennsylvania, USA
    #20
    Get a camera and a tripod, you will definately need a tripod. Take your before photo of the sky with a shutter speed of about 10 seconds, take your time lapse with a VERY LONG shutter speed, if you can do a 15 or longer minute shot then thats what you want (you need to have a BULB setting on your camera for this long shot) Bulb keeps the shutter open as long as you hold the shutter button down., then take your after photo the same way you took your first shot.

    hope this helps...

    google time laspe astrophotography....
     
  21. efoto macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2004
    Location:
    Cloud 9 (-6)
    #21
    iGary had the right idea, assuming you have full manual control of a digital camera. If not, Abstract's idea was decent as long as you can figure out which way the stars are supposed to move.

    If you choose to fudge the shot like that, remember that since the input light is quite dim (even with low atmospheric glow) and therefore to simulate the real motion of the stars (which is quite slow) you would want to move the camera VERY slow to get a bright enough trail. If not, you will get a bright white starting spot, and then dimmer trails if you move it too fast which would obviously give away your plan.

    Where do you live? If you are anywhere close to me I'd be willing to help out....I bet a few other MR members would too. Depending on the anality :p of your prof that might not work though if we live to far apart.
     
  22. Bloo Ice thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    May 4, 2005
    Location:
    Kansas
    #22
    Thanks for all your help. The project has come and gone...I just bs'd it on something else...it didnt' drag my grade down TOO much...just a few percent. He said I didn't put enough effor it in it....because I just researched stuff off the net...but oh well. I live in the Wichita KS area if anyone still wants to know. If anyone wanted to help out....he'd take that as extra credit...help my grade out...lol. But thanks all!!
     
  23. OutThere macrumors 603

    OutThere

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2002
    Location:
    NYC
    #23
    I don't think you should feel bad about the grade, the teacher had some seriously high expectations if he realy expected you to take that picture...you need some high end camera gear and a lot of patience to get it right. I've spent hours and hours outside at night trying to take the perfect star picture, but the closest I've come to date was this:

    [​IMG]

    That was 10 minutes, 40 seconds on my Canon Digital Rebel.

    Maybe you should talk to the teacher about the scope of his assignments so you don't run into something like this again. :)
     

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