Tips for Time-lapse?

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by Mito, Jul 28, 2012.

  1. Mito macrumors regular

    Jun 17, 2012
    Hello guys!

    I have been interested in photography about a year and tried few DSLRs and I ended up with 50D. I´m very happy with it, last few months I watched some time-lapse videos and it really looks great so I used all my "old" camera set and tried to make one.
    Here it is:

    I saw lot´s of tutorials on how to make time lapse but I would really like to hear some "first-hand" tips, tricks or just how to make it better! :)
  2. arjen92 macrumors 65816


    Sep 9, 2008
    Below sea level
    You got some great shots!

    But here's some things I noticed. Maybe it's rubbish because I never do time-lapses but anyway;

    1) I think it's better if you just focused on the clouds. No you see the trees moving wildly. It's kind of distracting. Especially since the first shot is from the trees with nothing to look at in the sky. They're in focus from the beginning.

    2) The clouds you recorded were cool, but I feel like the angle of the camera was weird. Like it wasn't level and then tilted, but in an angle in all axes. So it didn't feel like something you would see when you would look normal. It felt like that the person "looking at the clouds" had his head in a weird tilted position. So try to get a standpoint that looks restful, maybe zoom/crop while editing the video.

    I hope this was supportive and helping you.
  3. wonderspark macrumors 68040


    Feb 4, 2010
    Nice first time lapse.
    Experimentation will go a long way.
    I've been working on sunset-to-stars time lapses, and that's when I think the real fun begins. :)
  4. xStep macrumors 68000

    Jan 28, 2003
    Less lost in L.A.
    Time lapses are weird and wonderful, but you still need to be concerned about the basics of capturing an interesting and distraction free shot.

    I agree with arjen92 that the angle seems odd. The flickering trees are something to watch out for because that can be distracting. Subjects closer to the camera tend to be that way in time lapses and take away from the subject of interest further away, so if you can eliminate them, all the better. I think arjen92 was hinting at putting them out of focus. That would likely help too because the lack of detail may make them less distracting.

    I see you did some homework and used manual settings. That is usually more pleasing to the viewer and easier for you to integrate.

    I didn't like that you started to repeat the video. I'd rather you just end it, or add video from another session. Re-watching something I just saw usually doesn't entertain me.

    It's a good start in your new journey. :)

    I like time lapses too, so I wrote an app for that. :D
  5. Mito thread starter macrumors regular

    Jun 17, 2012
    Thanks guys! This really helped me :) I´m looking forward to doing night sky time-lapse, it´s the reason why I mainly bought Tokina 11-16mm f2.8, I found great place, it´s wide veld with really smalls hills (well, you can´t call them hills, they are that small) but there´s one problem - about 1.1km (0.7mile) is a small village, about 1500 people live there. I think (I´m NOT SURE) but this village may be behind a small hill which would hide it or there are some trees... anyway, I´m asking if the light pollution from this village would affect my line of sight or photos I will take (not able to see stars and so)

    Thanks! :)
  6. Hillskill macrumors member

    Jul 12, 2010
    Great first effort. I shoot timelapse professionally for a few clients. Be sure to get yourself a variable 77mm ND for your Tokina. Helps massively when trying to control light and drag your shutter during the daylight. Don't agonize over your interval either. If in doubt shoot much faster then your originally think is right. You can always speed up in post later on.
    Next challenge I'll set you is to do some star constellations. On my honeymoon we had a villa high in the spanish mountains. Even there we were still plagued by ambient light from other nearby villages! If you wait for a new moon you won't have the moon blow out detail and exposure in your clips. With your Tokina you should be able to shoot somewhere between 40-50sec exposures which will give you really detailed stars and cosmos but without star trails (you don't want trails). Use Stellarium on your computer to plot what constellations are where in the sky and at what time. If your in a part of the world (at the right time of year) you may have a chance to shoot Sagittarius in open sky. You might then have a chance of capturing the milky way in great detail!

    I am delivering a film to a client today. If it gets signed off I should be able to post a link here for all to see. Sharing is caring!
  7. Mito, Aug 11, 2012
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2012

    Mito thread starter macrumors regular

    Jun 17, 2012
    Yop, I know that exists small device which would do thing for you, you just have to set minimum shutter speed and maximum shutter speed. That´s all.

    Wow! Thanks! :) I´m definitely looking into buying ND filter, especially from a company called 84.5mm filters, they have professional filters and good price (and build quality).
    I tried another time-lapse and I think I had a luck.

    What do you guys think?

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