Time-lapse photography is essentially a technique to show landscapes in motion by compressing daily activity into a short video. Natural phenomena, shooting stars, clouds, sunrise and sunset, storms tracking, or any movement occurring in vast open landscapes are all great subjects for a time-lapse video.
Check out this example of time-lapse taken from a volcanic eruption in Iceland.
While we don’t recommend shooting volcanic eruptions on-site, the more rare the phenomena the more interesting it is to see its progression as time ‘lapses’ throughout the day. Wherever you may be, time-lapse is a great skill to add to your photography tool belt. It is especially handy when documenting travel.
To get started, you will need a bit more than just your average point and shoot camera. Here is a guide to some (not all) tools that will allow you to make your very own seamless and epic time-lapse:
A device that allows you to take evenly spaced sequential snapshots on your camera. This saves you from being a slave to the camera and taking thousands of exposures with a remote second after second.
As an alternative, special software can be used in place of an intervalometer to achieve proper spacing of exposures. Sofortbild, a software for Apple, is can be used to tether the spacing of snapshots after they have been taken.
A tripod or stabilizing clamp is key to keeping your time-lapse sequence clean and void of blur.
A NastyClamp or Gorilla Clamp can be substituted for large and sometimes expensive tripods. These two clamps are smaller, cheaper and can be more adaptable depending on the environment you choose to shoot your time-lapse in.
Tripods work great on flat surfaces, however a NastyClamp or Gorilla Clamp can be fixated onto a tree branch or rock. These clamps are great in situations where the ground is not level or steady.
Check out these links to decide what tripod or clamp is best for your setting:
Next step? More coming soon…
In the next post we will show you how to use software to pull raw sequences together into a seamless time-lapse.